The security department of Nigeria’s University of Benin, UNIBEN, has foiled a syndicate of lecturers which specializes in extortion of money from students, following the arrest of a Senior Lecturer of the University.
The arrested lecturer demanded N100, 000 from a female student of the University. He got the money, but it was all marked.
The lecturer (name withheld), an Assistant Dean of the Faculty of Law, was arrested by the University’s Security personnel and handed over to the police after he allegedly collected the marked money from the student to change her course of study from English Language to Law.
Sources at the University revealed that the suspect who represents his faculty in the committee constituted by management of the University to coordinate students’ inter-faculty movement every academic session, used his vantage position to compel the female student to pay N150,000 to approve her request for a change from the faculty of Arts to the Law faculty.
Following her inability to raise the money within the time frame given to her by the lecturer, the student allegedly reported the matter to another lecturer, who decried the planned extortion and encouraged her to formally lodge a complaint with the higher authority in the institution.
It was gathered that the University authority raised the sum of N100, 000 for the student and asked her to play along, after which she called the lecturer that she could only raise N100, 000.. The lecturer in turn promptly directed her to pay into a certain bank account.
Luck however ran against the lecturer when he called the girl’s cell phone, asking her to deliver the money to him in his office, just when she was going to pay the money into the bank account earlier given to her.
Sources at the University confirmed that no sooner the female student delivered the marked money to the lecturer than alerted personnel from the security unit swooped on the unsuspecting lecturer and handed him over to the police.
A search in the lecturer’s office by the University Security personnel was said to have led to the discovery of a list of 18 students, including the female student who paid the N100, 000.00.
The Public Relations Officer of the University, Mr Harrison Osarenren, who confirmed the story, said “with the arrest, we will try and rid the system of bad eggs.”