Haruna Kolo, a former Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPI) desk officer at the Federal Character Commission (FCC), has admitted to collecting up to N75 million bribes from job applicants in exchange for employment.
Kolo told federal lawmakers he took bribes from several desperate job seekers at the behest of FCC Chairman Muheeba Dankaka and shared the loot with her in her house.
He said Dankaka instructed him to transfer the money to his (Kolo’s) personal account and to pay her in cash, which he did a couple of times in her house.
He made the disclosure in Abuja at the hearing by the House of Representatives ad hoc Committee investigating federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and tertiary institutions on mismanagement of the IPPIS.
Kolo told the lawmakers he resigned from the FCC on 2 November 2022 to join the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) but later received salaries twice from the FCC.
He said he reported the error to the Human Resource Officer who promised to address it.
His words: “When she [Dankaka] came to the FCC as the Executive Chairman, she appointed me as a Protocol Officer and I carried out my duty diligently.
“On the allegations of job racketeering, the FCC Chairman instructed me to liaise with one Mr Shehu, who is a personal driver and Personal Assistant to the Taraba State Commissioner.
“As a desk officer, I was responsible to take whoever was employed to IPPIS for [data] capturing. No one could go there without a letter from the Chairman or Human Resource Officer of the FCC.
“When she came, she wrote a letter to the Accountant General of the Federation, instructing that no letter from the FCC should be honoured except she signs the letter. So, whenever there was a new employment, she signs, gives to me and I take it to the Accountant General’s office for capturing.
“Shehu is the one that brought those who paid money to my account for jobs, some paid N1 million, others N1.5 million, all to my personal account, my Ecobank account.
“She asked me to give cash to her, which I did through PoS [Point of Sale machine]. So, there is no evidence of transfer or anything.
“On the allegation of working at seven places, I was never at any time involved in seven jobs. They are making the allegation based on assumption.”
Employment at AMCON
“The second allegation on my subsequent employment at AMCON was a result of her [Dankaka’s] personal favour to me,” Kolo said, according to reporting by The PUNCH.
“We were four in number, and she gave the appointment letter to me, Kadijah, and Olushola. We all proceeded for an interview at AMCON headquarters in Abuja after which we were called upon for training on the 16th January 2023.
“After the training, Olushola and I were called to Lagos. Unfortunately, Kadijah, who is the Chairman’s biological sister, was rejected. The Chairman accused me of being responsible for her rejection.
“I see no reason why the Chairperson would make allegations of such magnitude against me. I have been threatened even at gunpoint and had to leave Abuja.
“I want this committee to know that after this sitting if anything happens to me, the FCC Chairperson should be held responsible.”
Committee Chairman Yusuf Gagdi promised to do every possible to unravel the truth and make it available to Nigerians.
“This committee will not sit down and watch taxpayers’ money being embezzled,” Gagdi pledged.
“I know why we were asking Kolo to give us evidence and we know why we were deferring this sitting for other witnesses alleged to have had financial dealings with the FCC.
“Kolo will appear here tomorrow (today). We are calling the other witnesses. We will allow you to do your work. Whoever is found wanting will answer his father’s name, including Kolo Haruna.”
The committee adjourned sitting until Tuesday (today).
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