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ICPC investigates alleged certificate forgery by perm sec

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By Cyril Mbah, Abuja

The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offenses Commission (ICPC), has launched discrete investigation into allegations of certificate forgery, falsification of employment records and earning unmerited salaries leveled against a permanent secretary in the Federal Civil Service.

Dependable sources at the ICPC disclosed that the investigation was launched following a highly-worded petition dated February 5, 2020 from a group identified as Concerned Public Servants which alleged that the federal permanent secretary has overstayed in government by making illegal changes in his employment records.

The official, who currently serves in the ministry, has allegedly worked for several years, far beyond the retirement age of public servants, with forged academic documents and falsifying the dates of birth and engagement under the protection of a powerful godfather who allegedly shielded him from prosecution over the years.

Addressed to the Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission [ICPC], Justice Emmanuel Ayoola and signed by Alhaji Umaru Ahmed, a spokesman of the group, the petition alleged that Edet Sunday Akpan started working as a state civil servant.

He allegedly transferred his service to the Federal Government in 1999 after rising to the rank of Commissioner for Finance and Industry in Akwa Ibom State.

Records showed that the official rose in the Federal Civil Service as at 2013 to the rank of director and was later promoted to the rank of Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Solid Minerals despite the clear inconsistencies and missing links in his obviously forged academic credentials.

For example, the civil servant claims to possess a Bachelor of Science Honours Degree in Economics from the University of Calabar, a Master’s of Science Honours Degree in Economics from the University of Lagos and an MBA in Finance and Accounting from the University of Ibadan among other qualifications.
However, among the array of documents he tendered periodically for employment and promotions, certificates relating to his graduation in the lower academic cadre especially the primary and secondary school grades were conspicuously missing although he claimed to have attended Qua  Iboc Science Secondary School, [Etinam Institute] from 1965 to 1970, College of Education, Nicvel and the University of Lagos Akoka from where he allegedly obtained a Bachelor of Science degree between 1977 and 1980.

There has been series of complaints against the Permanent Secretary over the discrepancies in his academic qualifications, the variations in his date of birth and the date of commencing employment as an employee of the Federal Civil Service Commission from concerned citizens who expressed apprehension that a public servant has been allowed not only to work with fake documents but has allegedly prolonged his stay in office illegally by the corrupt variations of appropriate dates.

Efforts made by our correspondent to contact Edet Sunday Akpan to throw light on the allegations leveled against him were ignored and text messages dispatched to him seeking audience or a public response to the allegations against him were equally thwarted.

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