By Demola Akinyemi
Ilorin—The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ilorin Zonal Office, has commenced investigations into allegation of N50 million bursary fraud against some management staff of Kwara State Scholarship Board.
In a statement, yesterday, by EFCC Director, Mr. Isyaku Sharu, those interrogated by the operatives of the commission included the Chairperson of the Scholarship Board, Hajia Fatimoh Yusuf, the Executive Secretary, Mr. Fatai Lamidi, and the board’s Accountant, Mr Stephen Ajewole, among others.
The statement read: ”It was gathered that the Kwara State Government, in 2017 and 2018, released the sum of N150 million as bursary allowances for 10,000 students, who are indigenes of Kwara State in various tertiary institutions. The commission gathered that the board did not pay up to 4,000 students, but fraudulently converted the remaining ones to personal use.
“The petitioners, who are students of various higher institutions of learning, had alleged that their names appeared as beneficiaries of bursary allowances at the Kwara State Scholarship Board but never received the money.
“During interrogation with the operatives of the commission the students, who sighted their names, Matriculation Numbers and Signatures, became very angry, insisting that the names and Matriculation Numbers were correct, but their signatures were forged. They claimed not to have been the original beneficiaries of the controversial bursary allowance, despite their particulars on the scholarship board documents.
“The officials of the board had earlier told the operatives of the anti-graft body that the Students were issued cheques, but the commission discovered that only few beneficiaries were given cash. As at the time of filing this report, the officials of the board were still being questioned by operatives of the EFCC.”