Justice Anwuli Chikere of the Federal High Court, Abuja, yesterday sent former Minister of Interior, Comrade Abba Moro to Kuje Prison custody over his alleged involvement in a N676million Nigerian Immigration Service, NIS job scandal.
Comrade Moro was remanded at Kuje prison after he pleaded not guilty to an 11-count criminal charge preferred against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
Also remanded in prison custody was ‎a Deputy Director in the ministry, Mr. F. O Alayebami.
However, Justice Chikere granted administrative bail to the 2nd defendant, Mrs. Anastasia Daniel-Nwobia, a former ‎Permanent Secretary in the Interior ministry when the alleged fraud was committed. Mrs. Daniel-Nwobia, who is nursing a baby, through her lawyer, Chief Chris Uche, SAN, persuaded the court to allow her go home to take care of her baby.
Meanwhile, Justice Chikere yesterday adjourned the case to next week Wednesday to consider whether or not the former minister and his alleged accomplice should be released on bail pending their trial.
EFCC had earlier told the court that ‎one of the accused persons, Mahmood Ahmadu, who was a Director at Drexel Tech Nigeria Ltd, a firm allegedly used to perpetuate the botched March 15, 2014 Immigration recruitment exercise that killed no fewer than 20 job seekers across the country, is currently at large.
The charge against the accused persons borders on obtaining by false pretence, procurement fraud and money laundering.
Specifically, EFCC alleged that the defendants defrauded 676,675 Nigerian applicants of N676, 675, 000 (Six Hundred and Seventy Six Million, Six Hundred and Seventy Five Thousand Naira).
Each of the 676,675 applicants was chargedN1, 000 for participating in the ill-fated recruitment exercise.
Besides, the defendants were alleged to have flouted the Public Procurement Act No. 65 of 2007 in the award of the contract for the recruitment test to Drexel Tech Nigeria Ltd.
The anti-graft agency said its investigations revealed that the firm which it said was not validly registered to operate in Nigeria, never bided for the contract. It said the contract was awarded through selective tendering procedure by invitation of 4 (Four) firms without seeking the approval of the Bureau for Public Procurement, contrary to Sections 40, 42 and 43 of the Public Procurement Act No. 65 of 2007 and punishable under Section 58 of the same Act.

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