Bauchi judicial workers forged documents for N11.5b contracts, CJ alleges
Facts have emerged on how employees of Bauchi State High Court used fake letterhead, stamp and other documents to corner and execute contracts worth N11.5 billion.
Chief Judge (CJ) of Bauchi, Rabi Umar, told select journalists in her office, yesterday, that some elements in the state’s judiciary were out to tarnish the image of the arm of government.
In a statement, Rabi disclosed that there were complaints against the nefarious activities of those elements. She added: “I always direct the Chief Registrar to investigate, and all the investigation reports indict the perpetrators, which prompted hatred for the Chief Registrar. Such investigations are directives from me and not out of his volition.
“The recent directive I gave for the investigation was the instances some staff of the High Court entered into contractual relationship with various companies worth billions of naira using forged stamp, letterhead of the office of the Chief Registrar and forms without our knowledge, authority or consent.”
The CJ said the victims of the fraudulent activities had complained directly to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
According to her, those involved are investigated and charged to court by the EFCC and are standing trial. She related another instance about four months ago, in which some staff of the High Court defrauded a company from Kaduna using forged documents of the court.
“The company petitioned the Assistant Inspector-General (AIG) Zone 12 Bauchi. They were investigated and charged to court by the police and subsequently remanded at the correctional service facility. All these fraudulent transactions are with full support and active connivance of their godfather, who is a senior member of the organisation operating behind the scene and shares in the proceeds of the fraud,” she said.
Umar said that some people accused her of appointing a Christian Chief Registrar, Emmanuel Danjuma, in the High Court.
Danjuma, who was called to the bar 32 years ago, she noted, has been working with the judiciary for 24 years.
“The Chief Registrar is always appointed from among the staff of the judiciary without recourse to religion as a criterion,” she stated, lamenting that some people were using religion to fight back, knowing that they are guilty.
The CJ had sworn in 31 Commissioners of Oath for the State Sharia Court. “My intention is to extend the security documents to the Sharia Court of Appeal, so as to carry the Grand Kadi along to check this menace,” she added.