Crime and Security

EFCC quizzes Oyo-Ita over N3bn scam, seizes passport

EFCC quizzes Oyo-Ita over N3bn scam, seizes passport

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), is presently investigating Nigeria’s Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Winfred Oyo-ita, over her alleged involvement in a N3 billion fraud.

Oyo-Ita was quizzed by the Commission on Wednesday over alleged contract scam and abuse of duty tour allowance, money laundering and stealing of government funds.

About N600million was reportedly traced to the account of one of her key aides who has been unable to give any justifiable explanation for it. 

The EFCC is said to have blocked the account and initiated the process of obtaining an order for the interim forfeiture of the seized cash.

The embattled Head of Service reportedly took ill after a four-day grilling during which she was in custody of the anti-graft agency between August 8 and 11, and was admitted in a hospital after being granted administrative bail.

Although the administrative bail was granted so that she could be reporting for further interrogation, it was gathered that she had not been able to return to the anti-corruption agency since she was allowed to go.

 Preliminary findings confirmed that about N3billion has been traced to the Head of Service which came in through proxy companies.

The anti-graft agency is said to have seized her international passport.

 Detectives, it was gathered, uncovered slush funds linked to the HoS while probing the activities of a former Minister under whom she served as Permanent Secretary.

A source inside the EFCC was quoted as saying; “Preliminary investigation confirmed that she used different fronts or cronies to obtain contracts from Ministries, Departments and Agencies. While tracing embezzlement by the ex-Minister, detectives stumbled on diversion of funds into proxy companies which the Head of Service has relationships with. The startling revelations made detectives to dig further into her activities as a Permanent Secretary and Head of Service.

“There were proofs of how she secured contracts through proxy firms from some ministries including Special Duties, Power, Works and others. There was a case of abuse of office because there was evidence of pressure on Permanent Secretaries to get her contracts. She moved from one ministry to the other.

“Investigators also discovered that she was involved in falsification of Duty Tour Allowance and estacodes and about N600 million has been traced to the account of one of her aides. This illicit account has been blocked and the EFCC is in the process of invoking interim forfeiture clause.”

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