Two persons were arraigned before a Lagos State High Court on Monday for cloning the Globalcom number of Governor Akinwumi Ambode and attempting to use same to defraud the state’s Accountant-Genera, Mrs. Umar Abimbola.
The duo – Rilwan Jamiu and Balogun Oyewole – were arraigned before Justice Sedoten Ogunsanya on three-count charge, including attempt to commit felony and obtaining money under false pretences.
They, however, pleaded not guilty to all the charges.
While presenting their case before the court, the prosecutor, Adebayo Haroun, allaged that the defendants committed the offence at the Lagos State Treasury Office, Ministry of Finance, Alausa, Ikeja.
He accused them of using a clonned version of the Governor’s GSM nunmber to sent an SMS to the Accountant General, asking her to pay N50m into an account.
But, Abimbola said she became curious and suspicious on receiving the message since everthing about it was strange and alien to the governor style.
“On February 10, 2016, I received a text message at exactly 12.52pm. I initially thought the message was from the executive governor of Lagos State, because the name which I stored his number with was the same one that appeared in my inbox.
“The message read, ‘AG, urgently transfer N50m to Dayder Limited acc no 002806988 Keystone Bank. We will talk later, H.E.’
“I became suspicious because his Excellency does not send text messages for any payment. He calls us to his office when the need arises.
“This text message also looked strange because His Excellency would not end his message with H.E or start with AG. This was not his pattern. I put a call to the governor and he asked me to bring the phone for the security to investigate the text message since it did not come from him,” she wrote in her statement.
The presiding judge ordered that they be remanded in custody and adjourned till November 17, 2017 for their trial.