•BY NNAMDI OLEHI in Abuja in Abuja•
Nigerian government said it had made its position known on the alleged forgery of National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) certificate by the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun.
Fielding questions from journalists in the State House after the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC), the Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said in as much as the NYSC, which he described as part and parcel of the government had spoken on the matter, the government had equally spoken and had nothing more to add.
“The government has spoken. NYSC is part of government and I have nothing to add to what the NYSC has said.”
An online medium had reported at the weekend that the minister who graduated from London East Polytechnic at the age of 22 in 1989, failed to comply with NYSC Act, which made it compulsory for every Nigerian graduate at home and abroad to participate in one year of mandatory service to the country before he/she could work anywhere in the country.
The Act does not only prescribe one year of imprisonment or N2,000 fine for anyone who evades the scheme, but also stipulates a three-year jail term or N5,000 fine for anyone who forged the NYSC certificate.
The report had stated that whereas Adeosun who returned to Nigeria from London in 2002 failed to observe the scheme but rather proceeded to work in different places and in 2009.
The report also said that when it dawned on her that she might run into trouble, she allegedly procured a forged certificate, claiming exemption that is only obtainable by those who have exceeded 30 years of age upon graduation.
According to the report, since Adeosun was 22 when she graduated, the claim of exemption was completely false.
The report also claimed that whereas the allegedly forged certificate was dated September 2009 and signed by a former NYSC director, Yusuf Bomoi, now deceased, Bomoi actually exited NYSC in January 2009, nine months before the certificate was allegedly obtained.
Meanwhile, the Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved a total sum of N35.613 billion for various road and bridge projects in different parts of the country.
Briefing journalists at the end of the FEC meeting, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, said N8.9 billion was approved for the construction of Ikom road and bridge in Calabar, Cross River State.
According to him, both the road and the bridge, which he said would be completed within 24 months, would create access to the port and also enhance free movement of trucks and containers.
Fashola also disclosed that N11.78 billion and N8.6 billion respectively were approved for road projects in Yobe State and Kwara State.
The minister also said N5.4 billion was approved for road projects in Abia State while another N933 million was approved for automatic meter reading equipment for Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).