Police charge Bayelsa senator with NYSC exemption certificate forgery

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Police

The Inspector General of Police has instituted a forgery suit against the senator representing Bayelsa Central, Benson Konbowei.

In the suit marked: CR/028/2023, the IG preferred three charges, bordering on forgery of the National Youth Service Corps exemption certificate, among others, against the senator.

The police said the senator acted contrary to the provisions of sections 366,156 and 158 of the Penal Code Act CAP 532 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 1990 and was liable to punishment under Section 364 of the same Act.

The senator is the sole defendant in the matter.

He was specifically accused of fraudulently forging a document titled ‘Certificate of Exemption’ with number 000256454 and dated July 4, 2008.

Count two read, “That you, Benson Friday Konbowei, sometime in March 2014 within the jurisdiction of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory fraudulently used as genuine a certain document to wit: Certificate of Exemption Number 000256454 dated 4th of July 2008 signed by the Director-General, NYSC, Directorate Headquarters, Abuja to the Independent National Electoral Commission to contest election into the Bayelsa State House of Assembly in 2015 election, which you won and represented Southern Ijaw Constituency IV and the Bayelsa Central Senatorial District National Assembly election conducted on February 25, 2023, which you won and currently a senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“And you also submitted four copies of the same forged NYSC certificate to gain admission into the School of Postgraduate Studies of the Imo State University, Owerri, which you then knew to be a forged document and you submitted four copies of the forged Certificate of Exemption Number 000256454 dated July 4, 2008, as a compulsory requirement to the School of Postgraduate Studies of the Imo State University Owerri, which is a compulsory requirement to get admission into the school of postgraduate studies in order to study.”

To prosecute the case, the IG listed 15 witnesses, including the Registrar, Imo State University; Senator Cleopas Zuwoghe; ASP Usman John; the Vice Chancellor, Imo State University, Owerri and Rhoda Dawa ( Assistant Director, NYSC Headquarters) or any other staff of NYSC among others.

A hearing notice sighted on Sunday showed that the matter will be coming up today (Monday) at the Federal Capital Territory High Court.

The Attorney General of the Federation, Lateef Fagbemi, (SAN), by a letter dated February 2, 2024, appointed Egwuaba Reuben as the prosecutor.

He urged him to update the Director of Public Prosecutions of the Federation on the stages and progress report of the prosecution of the case.