The Yola Criminal Area Court II has remanded the Education Secretary of Mubi South Local Government Area, Jibrilla Babale, and four others for allegedly diverting 800 schoolbags donated by the United Nations Children’s Fund for public schools in Mubi South and Mubi North LGAs.
Those remanded in prison alongside the Education Secretary on Monday included the UNICEF Co-ordinator in-charge of distribution for Mubi South and North LGAs, Mustapha Mohammed; Musa Mahmud, Aliyu Mohammed and Mohammed Yahaya.
UNICEF representatives, who were worried by the indiscriminate sale in open markets of the agency’s branded schoolbags meant for pupils as part of a school enrolment drive, reportedly complained to the state governor, Ahmadu Fintiri, who then ordered discreet investigations into the scandal.
Fintiri, The PUNCH learnt, ordered that disciplinary action should be taken against any civil servant involved in the alleged illegal sales of the schoolbags.
It was while on the trail of the culprits that it was uncovered that Babale, the education secretary, who headed the distribution of the schoolbags, was found to have allegedly diverted 800 pieces to his cronies who allegedly sold the bags for N700,000.
According to the police First Information Report, the ES allegedly diverted 800 bags and gave them to the UNICEF Distribution Co-ordinator, Mohammed, who in turn converted and sold some to Mahmud of Mubi North at the sum of N330, 000 only.
Likewise, Mahmud, later allegedly sold the bags to Mohammed and Yahaya of Mubi North at the sum of N420, 000, while knowing full well that they were provided to be distributed free of charge to pupils.
Jibrilla and four other accomplices were charged to court by the state Commissioner Police, Mohammed Barde, for criminal conspiracy, breach of official trust, and receiving stolen property which contravened sections 60, 302, 307, and 312 of the Penal Code Law, 2018 as amended.
Though the four accused denied the charges, their counsel pleaded they be admitted to bail. Justice Nuhu Garta, however, ordered that the defendants be remanded in prison custody, and adjourned the case to November 1, 2021, for commencement of hearing.
He said the bail application would be considered before the date.
This content was originally published here.