“The police uncovered the fact of the matter through the confession of one of the suspects, a staff of the Federal Ministry of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs.”
The suspects, according to spokesman for the command SP Chidi Nwabuzor, while briefing journalists on Tuesday, were arrested for attempting to defraud Mr Buhari’s regime to the tune of $2 billion.
The police officer also revealed that the arrest was sequel to a complaint received by the crack team of the command on April 25, via a petition from Richard David, a representative of Okpella community, in Etsako Central local government area of Edo.
The cop explained that the suspects had on July 14, 2021, appeared before the complainant and his kinsmen and told them, that they had secured an approval from the federal government, through the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), to evacuate scrap borehole pipes equipment worth $2 billion.
“The said equipment was meant for the Okpella water project by the federal government under the Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF). The community people who were apprehensive wisely disallowed the evacuation of the items,” the police officer explained. “This action by the Okpella people, however, prompted one of the suspects to go to the Okpella police station to report that the community refused them evacuating the items.”
The police spokesman added, “During investigation, the police uncovered the fact of the matter through the confession of one of the suspects, who is a staff of the Federal Ministry of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, Abuja. The said suspect also agreed to have forged the presidency approval for auctioneer documents for the operation. Investigation has been concluded and the suspects would soon be charged to court.”
Mr Nwabuzor, however, noted that the successful arrest of the suspects was due the operational input of police commissioner in Edo, Abutu Yaro, who had created operations department annexes to bring police visibility to communities and grassroots.
Meanwhile, one of the suspects, a staff of the Federal Ministry of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, and a principal administrative officer, told journalists that he was the sole originator of the fake document.
“I am the sole originator of the fake document that was claimed to have originated from the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF). The plan was a collaborative job between myself and staff of IREK Engineering LTD, a company based here in Benin,” he stated. “I personally got the letter from the wrong side as the documents which were addressed to the Edo governor, the commissioner of police in Edo as well as all relevant security agencies were forged.”
He further disclosed that he had received N500,000 for the forgery.