A woman, Amina Mohammed, posing as the wife of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State has been arrested and paraded for fraud by the Department of State Services (DSS) on Monday, December 3, 2018.
The DSS accused the woman of gaining unauthorised entries into the Presidential Villa over a period of time, during which she impersonated top government officials, including once identifying herself as the first lady of Kogi State.
DSS spokesperson, Peter Afunanya said that; “The importance of this conference is to unveil the identity of a suspect that had an unauthorized access to the Aso Rock Presidential Villa and used the Office of the First Lady to engage in a fraudulent act.”
“The woman, who is being paraded, has adopted various aliases and used the same false identities to defraud several unsuspecting persons before she was discovered. Amina Mohammed, also known as Justina Oluoha and Amina Villa, had on November 22, 2017, paraded herself as the First Lady of Kogi State.”
“She used the false identity to evade protocol and scrutiny thus gaining unauthorized access into the Villa, and particularly the residence of the First Lady and wife of the president, Hajia Aisha Buhari.”
“She took advantage of the fact that personalities such as first ladies, ministers and certain categories of officials are not taken through rigorous protocol and security checks at the Villa posts.”
“What may even surprise you is that Amina, whose phone number is registered with the name, Amina Villa, had on the said date invited (names withheld) into the Villa wherein she made him believe the invitation was at the instance of the First Lady.”
“Investigation has revealed that the First Lady was away on Lesser Hajj and not in the Villa during the period. The businessman had complained that he was fleeced of over N150 million in respect of a Court of Appeal property in Lagos, which Amina had promised to help him buy through the First Lady.”
“The property was said to have been part of those under the Presidential Implementation Committee on Lease of Federal Government Properties.”
“Investigation has shown that this unholy enterprise is not to the knowledge of the First Lady. What Amina simply did was to use the First Lady’s name and office as bait to lure and defraud her victims.”
“Members of the public are advised to be wary of individuals or groups that drop names and offices of high government officials to defraud them.” However, Amina Mohammed said; “The DSS did not arrest me, I came here on their invitation. I am not a fraudster; the sisters of the First Lady are involved in this business. I cannot accept this allegation.”
“The former SGF is involved in this fraud. Aisha’s sister is involved. I did not dupe him because he usually gave bribe to buy Federal Government property. The directors in the ministry have been involved in getting bribe before bidding is concluded.”
“He knows the process and taking him into Villa was not an attempt to defraud him but because Aisha’s sister was involved. I cannot allow anybody to put me to shame to the whole world. Ask the First Lady’s sisters, ex-SGF is involved. Leave me alone.”
Besides, Amina Mohammed revealed that she had worked closely with Moriyatu, a sister of Mrs. Aisha Buhari, and Babachir Lawal, a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF).
Amina Mohammed said Okafor had been buying government properties for a long time, and that he knew he had to bribe officials in order to be shortlisted as a potential buyer of an advertised property.
Mrs. Aisha Buhari’s spokesperson confirmed that Moriyatu was a sister to the first lady, but denied knowledge of her likely involvement in such matters… “She is part of the family,” Suleiman Haruna said of Moriyatu… “But I do not have any details about whether she was involved in such a thing or not.”
After initially frustrating attempts to be interviewed by a battery of reporters, Amina Mohammed ultimately opened up, saying she had been in DSS’ detention since first turning herself in four months ago.
“DSS has been keeping me in this office for four months,” she screamed to reporters in order to get some words across while being dragged back into the service’s secluded interrogation cubicle.
Afunanya, however, denied that she had been in detention for four months, saying she only turned herself in about the first week in November. He added that she had been granted administrative bail and allowed to go report at the secret police on schedules.
“Her cantankerous behaviour before the press further speaks to the dubious personality,” the DSS spokesperson said.
Asked repeatedly whether Amina Mohammed mentioned Lawal and Mrs. Buhari as her co-conspirators during interrogation and what was done to determine the veracity of her claim, Afunanya said the matter was under investigation.