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$8.4m Fraud: Accused Person In Bamaiyi’s Matter Failed Polygraph Examination – EFCC

Stephen Ubimago

A polygraph expert, Mr. Mohammed Umar, called as a prosecution witness in the ongoing trial of Mrs. Oluronke Rosulu, who the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) accused of defrauding a former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Ishaya Bamaiyi to the tune of $3330, 000, yesterday told a Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja that the accused failed the polygraph examination conducted by the commission on her Umar, a quality control operative, attached to the Polygraph Unit of the EFCC, Abuja, made the claim while testifying before the court presided over by Justice Babajide Lateef Lawal-Akapo.

Rosulu is standing trial for allegedly aiding controversial businessman and a one-time Lagos socialite, Chief Fred Chijindu Ajudua, to defraud Bamaiyi of the said sum. The defendant, who was a former registrar to Justice Joseph Oyewole, now of the Court of Appeal, is facing a two-count charge of conspiracy and obtaining money by false pretences.

The EFCC said the fraud took place while Bamaiyi and Ajudua were being remanded at Kirikiri Maximum Prison for separate criminal charges between November 2004 and June 2005. The anti-graft agency stated that Ajudua obtained the money from Bamaiyi on the pretext that it represented the professional fees charged by Chief Afe Babalola (SAN) to handle his case. He is also alleged to have claimed that the money would help to facilitate Bamaiyi’s release from prison.

During yesterday’s proceeding, the witness who was led in evidence by the counsel to the EFCC, Mr. Seidu Atteh, said that he studied the video recording of the polygraph examination and other documents, maintaining on that score he was able to determine that the examinee was being deceptive during the polygraph examination. Umar, who has a diploma in psycho-physiological detection of deception and a member of the American Polygraph Association, said Rosulu’s polygraph examination is not the first of such test conducted in the country by his team.

While being cross-examined by counsel to the defendant, Mr. Bamidele Ogundele, the witness said his team did not carry out a polygraph test on Lt. Gen Ishaya Bamaiyi and a prison official, ACP Abdullahi Garba, to determine if they were lying against the defendant.

Umar also said that polygraph test is not a lie detector, but a means for detecting deception. “Deception is a polygraph terminology, and where the examinee is not being truthful during the examination, the polygraph would give indication,” the witness said.

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