Fred Ezeh, Abuja
Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, has declared at the headquarters of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) in Bwari, Abuja, yesterday, that past and present vice chancellors, who allegedly dipped their fingers in the public till, may soon be called to answer questions.
Magu also said the same probe would be extended to past and present JAMB officials, if found wanting.
The working visit to JAMB, said Magu, was to appreciate the reforms initiated by the new JAMB management, which, he said, has restored transparency and accountability to its operations, which resulted in the remittance of over N7 billion to the country’s purse.
He said: “We have made tremendous progress in the fight against corruption, but, there is more to do, to chase away the monster called corruption. It has been responsible for the slow pace of development in Nigeria. You might not do it my way but, your little effort would deeply be appreciated.
“We have observed that the best way to fight corruption in Nigeria is to bring everybody on board, irrespective of age, political, religious and ethnic differences. So, we are soliciting the support of everybody in this fight.
“I don’t need to remind you that corruption has eaten deep into the fabric of the Nigerian system. But we are determined to fight it. However, it is the responsibility of everybody to join in the fight, either individually or collectively, so we can rescue Nigeria from collapse.”
The EFCC boss, however declined comments on possible probe of past JAMB registrars who were alleged to have embezzled revenues generated from the sale of Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) application forms.
“We are still doing our underground investigation on that matter and will make our position known to the public. But, it is too early for me to comment on that or any other related issue. All I can assure you is that we won’t spare any JAMB official, past or present, including vice chancellors of universities or other heads of tertiary institutions who are alleged to have touched public funds.”
Magu thanked JAMB Registrar, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, for the transparency and accountability he has promoted in JAMB, which has resulted in remittance of billions of naira to the Federation Account.
Oloyede, however, appreciated the determination and commitment of the EFCC chairman in the fight against corruption. He assured him of JAMB’s support and cooperation, particularly in the investigation of any JAMB staff that are alleged to have embezzled public resources.
Meanwhile, there are indications that JAMB might consider extension of the deadline for the registration of 2018 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME). The reason, it was gathered, is to allow thousands of candidates who are yet to purchase or complete their forms the opportunity to do so.
The board also announced March 9 to 17, 2018 for the conduct of the 2018 UTME examination.