Ojerinde, family members in fresh trouble for ‘selling government property’

A former Registrar Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Professor Lawrence Adedibu Ojerinde, Thursday, put on fresh trial by the federal government for allegedly selling off its property in Ghana.

The federal government docked the embattled ex- JAMB registrar alongside his three sons and a daughter-in-law in Abuja on Thursday.

The accused persons who were all present in court were docked on 17-count criminal charges by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC).

Ojerinde in the third series of the criminal charges was docked before a Federal High Court in Abuja alongside his family’s six companies.

In the new charge, the former JAMB Registrar is accused of selling off a federal government property situate House No. 4, Ahomko Drive, Achimota Phase 2, Accra, Ghana.

The house was said to have been sold out by Ojerinde and his sons after it was forfeited to the federal government in lieu of corrupt benefits.

The fresh charge indicated that the corrupt benefit was conferred on Ojerinde while being a public officer by one Jimoh Olabisi Olatunde through corrupt practices and abuse of office, contrary to Section 26 (1) (C) and punishable under Section 24 of the ICPC Act 2000.

Apart from Ojerinde, the three sons are Olumide Abiodun Ojerinde, Adedayo Ojerinde and Oluwaseun Adeniyi Ojerinde while the daughter- in- law is Mary Funmilola Ojerinde.

The family companies also put on trial are Doyin Ogbohi Petroleum Ltd, Cheng Marbles Limited, Sapati International Schools Ltd, Trillium Learning Centers Ltd, Standout Institutes Ltd and ESLI Perfect Security Printers Ltd.

ICPC lawyer, Ebenezer Adenekan Shogunle, objected to granting of bail to Ojerinde and Oluwaseun Adeniyi Ojerinde on the grounds of their refusal to honour series of invitations by the anti-graft agency as well as likelihood of filing more charges against them.

Justice Inyang Edem Ekwo, who took the plea of the defendants, asked the ICPC lawyer if there were pending criminal charges against them and whether they were admitted on bail by courts, which the counsel answered in the affirmative.

The counsel admitted that Ojerinde was facing similar trial before a Niger State High Court in Minna and another one before a Federal High Court in Abuja.

Following the confirmation that another Federal High Court in Abuja had once admitted the ex-JAMB Registrar to bail, Justice Ekwo invoked the previous bail conditions to admit him to bail.

Justice Ekwo ordered Ojerinde who was weeping profusely in the open court, to immediately attend to his failing health so as to be able to stand for trial as required by law.

The court subsequently fixed November 13, 14, 15 and 16 for trial during which the ICPC is expected to call 18 witnesses to testify against the defendants.

UNI Agric Markurdi
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