It was drama yesterday, as a self-confessed fraudster, Mr. Aminu Yarima, narrated before an Abuja Chief Magistrate Court at Wuse Zone 2, how the devil, sometime in December last year, deceived him into impersonating the National Security Adviser, NSA, Mr. Sambo Dasuki.
Aminu, who pleaded guilty to a one-count criminal charge preferred against him by the Nigeria Police Force yesterday, told the court that it was the same devil that commanded him to dupe four sitting ministers under President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration.
Consequently, he bought a GSM line, 08034467417, which he used and called the personal phone numbers of the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Nigerian Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala; Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke, Information Minister, Labaran Maku and the Minister of Education, Ruqayyatu Rufai.
Nevertheless, the operation went awry for the accused person who holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting, shortly after he called the four chosen Ministers and identified himself as the NSA, demanding to have a private audience with each of them with a view to discussing certain issues of great national importance.
Sensing danger, one of the ministers was said to have notified the Police which promptly traced the call and apprehended the accused person.
Meanwhile, the prosecuting counsel who is a Deputy Superintendent of Police, DSP, Stanley Nwodo, told the court that the offence was contrary to the provisions of sections 312, 324 and 325 of the Penal Code.
However, both the accused person and his counsel, Mr. Edwin Atta, urged the court to temper justice with mercy, insisting that it was the devil that masterminded the offence.
Specifically, the accused person told the court that not only was he a first time offender, he said he had two wives and two kids that depended on him for survival, adding that his mother died of shock while he was in detention.
The defence counsel equally urged the trial court to take into account the fact that the accused person voluntarily pleaded guilty to the offence, saying he had since repented of his actions and shown deep remorse.
Commending the accused for not wasting the judicial time of the court, the prosecutor said he was ready to proceed on trial yesterday assuming the accused had not admitted his guilt.
After listening to all the parties, trial Magistrate Grace Adebayo adjourned the matter till today to convict and sentence the accused person.
The offence upon which he was charged attracts a maximum punishment of seven years imprisonment.