Nigeria Police hopefuls charged with certificate forgery

Activists believe many police officers forged certificates too

They had high hopes of joining the police force to “hunt down criminals,” but police authorities say they will not because they are criminals themselves. 23 of them, “unlucky,” face jail terms for forgery.

The Lagos state police command has charged 23 students of the Ikeja Police College with falsification of educational qualifications at an Ikeja Magistrates’ Court.

They students were arraigned on Tuesday before Magistrate Olufemi Isaacs for falsifying their educational qualifications, an offence many activists say is common among police recruits in Nigeria.

Police prosecutor, Barth Nwaokeye, said the accused students falsely declared that they held National Certificate in Education (NCE), National Diploma (ND) from various institutions in the country.

He argued that the “rogue students” tricked the collage’s recruiting officers with their false qualifications and gained admission into the collage.

The accused persons, aged between 22 and 37 years, had been training in the collage for months after which they were to be decorated as officers of the Nigeria Police Force..

Mr. Nwaokeye said their offence was contravened Section 96 of the Criminal Code, Vol. 44, Laws of Lagos State of Nigeria, 2011.

The accused students pleaded not guilty to the charge and were all granted bail for N100, 000 each, with two sureties worth that equivalent.

The court listed the accused students as:

Johnson Adejobi, Adamu Yusuf, Jerome Oluwasegun, Ujah Onu, Patrick Adamu, Ebenezer Gana, Ayuba Sanni, Isa Sunday, Zakari Musa, and Lawal Adeniyi.

Samuel Ajaji, Grace Buba, Suraju Birisiyu, Owolabi Matanni, Adamu Jubrin, Uhini Edicha, Ukwumonu Ibrahim, Ibrahim Abu, Watti Olanrewaju, Oche Rose, Alhaji Adejoh, Yemi Ajayi and John Oko.

Trail of the accused begins April 18.