The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) may beam its searchlight on the alleged humongous corruption being perpetuated by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) under the watch of its registrar, Prof Is-haq Oloyede.
SaharaReporters gathered that the ICPC received series of petitions, urging the anti-corruption agency to investigate and prosecute the JAMB registrar over “extreme fraud, corruption and desecration of the code of conduct of public office.”
Apart from the ICPC, SaharaReporters learnt that some petitions were also sent to the Auditor-General of the Federation and the Office of the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu.
One of the petitions sighted by SaharaReporters, and addressed to the ICPC Chairman, alleged that there was a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which the board entered into with private entities in the name of Computer-Based Test (CBT) leading to the alleged misappropriation of N11billion.
One of the petitioners was the Integrity and Transparency Watchdog group, which submitted its copy to the AuGF’s office.
The petition specifically called on the ICPC to investigate Oloyede and one of his associates, Mr Mufutau Bello, the self-acclaimed DFA, in violation of Section 12 &19 of the corrupt practices and other related offenses act of 2000 and punishable under relevant section.
The petition reads in part, “That the anti-corruption body investigates cases of infractions perpetrated by Mr Mufutau A Bello which is against the Public Procurement Act (PPA), 2007, with the hope of punishing any civil servant found to have colluded with contractors to subvert the rules of the Act.
“That Is-haq Oloyede and Mufutau A. Bello having contravened the Financial Act, Corrupt practices and other related offences at Section 105 of criminal code, to this end, we request an immediate investigation into the rot in JAMB which is a grave indicator to the nation’s education economy at this time of scarcer resources.”
The petition alleged that the consultant-turned DFA had taken over the job of the Director Procurement or Secretary, Parastatals Tender Board, by signing award letters of contracts given out by JAMB.
According to the petition, the Registrar unilaterally transferred the erstwhile Director of Finance and Account (DFA) and bypassed the Governing board to get approval from the Honorable Minister of Education to appoint Mufutau A Bello as a consultant; he then later converted him to the new Director of Finance and Accounts which contravened the Public Service Rules.
Also, sources within the ICPC told SaharaReporters that careful investigation unravelled massive corruption and misappropriation of public funds by JAMB.
The petition added that “this anomaly turns out to be the bedrock of massive corruption which now reigns supreme in JAMB which contravened the Financial Act and Corrupt Practices and other related offenses of Section 105 of criminal code.
“It should be noted that this appointed consultant who is now working as DFA of JAMB is a long-time ally / kinsman of the JAMB Registrar and not a staff of JAMB or civil servant in any way. This said consultant turned DFA is now a co-signatory of JAMB account and does things without checks and balances.
“We are deeply worried about this and accompanied with the fact that the registrar boasts that he has the full backing of the Honorable Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu.
“Further recall that in 2015 there was a presidential directive that all government payments should be made into the Treasury Single Account (TSA) and thereafter agencies can make payments to whatever bodies in line with their respective budgets and the procurement law.
“But the JAMB Registrar flouted this rule and entered into Memorandum of Understanding with private entities in the name of Computer-Based Test (CBT) centres and consultants.
“The salient question needs to be asked to wit; how did he get into the agreement that allowed candidates to make some payment directly to CBT centres rather than the TSA? This singular act has automatically violated the government policy on revenue collection.
“According to the CBN guidelines on the implementation of TSA, “government agencies are not to operate any bank account under any guise, outside the purview and oversight of the Treasury.” Also, the “Guidelines on the Implementation of Treasury Single Accounts (TSA) I e-Collection”, issued by the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation (OAGF) on October 15th, 2015, prohibited MDAs from operating any bank account.
The petition noted that “No MDA is permitted to maintain account for any purpose with commercial banks including transit accounts. Diversion of deposits to any commercial bank account and use of surrogate accounts of any form is strictly prohibited.”
“The deal with CBT Centres also flouts the directive that any agreements above fifty million naira must be approved by the Attorney General of the Federation. Did the AGF grant approval for the said agreement or did the Registrar get the certificate of no objection from the Bureau of Public Procurement?
“It is indeed shocking to discover after our investigation that many UTME candidates were made to pay the sum of one thousand naira for diesel in the 2022 JAMB Examination. It should be emphasised that this has not only placed untold burdens on the parents/guardians of the candidates but has given a negative impression of President Muhammadu Buhari’s fight against corruption. Again why would candidates pay money directly to private coffers on a matter that is government controlled?
“The JAMB Registrar in his tradition does not advertise contracts for public competition but discreetly awards all contracts to his allies which he usually paraded as consultants, including jobs that are meant to be done by the staff of JAMB which contradicts The Public Procurement of 2007 (as Amended 2016).
“This Act governs the bidding process for public procurement in Nigeria to enhance and ultimately ensures the entrenchment of diversity, inclusiveness, fairness and equality in wealth creation and distribution in the Nigerian economy.”
Another of the petition with the ICPC stated that the Award of Contract for the supply of office stationeries worth (N289,859,700) VAT inclusive; to International Control System on 14th June and May 14th 2021 which worth was over (N18,984, 420.84) was signed by One Mufutau A Bello, a self-appointed DFA for JAMB who now signs contract award letters instead of the director of procurement.
The group which expressed its displeasure over the consistent breach of governmental Regulations by the board of JAMB led by Prof Oloyede, equally condemned “the reckless and fraudulent spending of public funds, abuse of privilege, and diversion of the peoples common patrimony for personal enrichment,
“it’s highly pitiable and worrisome to note that Prof Oloyede in connivance with Mufutau A. Bello continues to expend Government resources without due processes and have total disregard to financial rules stipulated by the Federal Republic of Nigeria to guide her financial operations.
“Prof Oloyede’s act and mismanagement is not only an aberration but also constitutes a great danger capable of stirring doubt as to if the current administration is really serious in the fight against corruption and with the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, looking the other way instead of confronting the fast growing corruption under his watch.”