EFCC arraigns ‘Mama Boko Haram’ for alleged N66m fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Wednesday arraigned Tahiru Daura and Aisha Wakil, popularly known as ‘Mama Boko Haram,’ before Justice Aisha Kumaliya of the Borno State High Court, Maiduguri.

They were charged with three counts of conspiracy and cheating to the tune of N66m.

Wakil was reportedly involved in peace talks with the Boko Haram insurgents initiated by the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan. She became known as Mama Boko Haram on account of her links to the terrorist group.

The prosecution of the duo followed a petition by one Ali Tijjani, Managing Director of AMTMAT Global Ventures against Complete Care and Aids Foundation, a non-governmental organisation run by the defendants.

The EFCC spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, explained in a statement that the petitioner alleged that on September 7, 2018, Complete Care and Aids Foundation awarded his company a contract to supply processed maize grain, referred to as ‘biski’ worth N51m which Wakil received on behalf of the foundation.

Tijjani said his company, upon the request of the defendants, equally processed and funded their trip to Morocco to the tune of N15m, a cost they allegedly refused to defray.

Count two of the charge read, “That you Tahiru Saidu Daura, while being a programme manager of Complete Care and Aid Foundation, and Aisha Wakil, being the CEO of Complete Care and Aid Foundation on the 7th September, 2018, in Maiduguri within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, dishonestly induced  Ali Tijjani,  the CEO and alter ego of AMTMAT Global Ventures to deliver to you, processed maize grains (biski), valued at N51m, which you are yet to pay and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 320(a) and punishable under Section 322 of the Penal Code Cap 102 Laws of Borno State.”

The defendants pleaded not guilty to all the charges and the prosecution counsel, Fatsuma Muhammad applied for a trial date and for the remand of the defendants in the custody of the Nigerian Correctional Centre, pending the determination of the case.

Waziri and B. Zanna made oral bail applications for the defendants on the ground of the administrative bail earlier granted to them by the EFCC.

Justice Kumaliya granted them bail in the sum of N30m with two sureties in like sum, one of whom must be at the level of a permanent secretary in the civil service with a landed property in Maiduguri GRA.

The surety must also submit the title document of the property to the registry of the court.

The statement read, “The judge further declared that the bail will be revoked on the failure of the defendants to attend the trial. She adjourned the matter till January 13, 2020 for commencement of trial.”
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