7th September, 2012
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Friday, 7 September, arraigned a Business Manager with the United Bank of Africa Plc, University of Ilorin Branch, Sirajudeen Abdullahi alongside two others: Segun Adelodun and John Afolabi before a Kwara State High Court sitting in Ilorin .
The three accused persons, who were arraigned on an eight count charge, allegedly conspired with others (now at large), to obtain the sum of N59.6 Million, from the University of Ilorin Personnel Cost Account with the bank.
One of the counts reads: “That you Sirajudeen Abdullahi, Segun Adelodun, John Afolabi, Oloruntoba Akinyele (now at large), Badmus Kabir Omojasola (now at large), and John Balogun (now at large) on or about the 14th day of September,2011 at Ilorin within the jurisdiction of this Honourable court with intent to defraud conspired to obtain Fifty Nine Million, Six Thousand ,Two Hundred and Fifty naira Only(N59,006,250) from the University of Ilorin Personnel Cost Account in possession of the United Bank of Africa Plc by false pretence contrary to Section 8(a) and 1(3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act No 14 of 2006”.
Counsel to EFCC, Rotimi Oyedepo informed the court that the prosecution had filed an amended eight count charge dated August 29, 2012 , pursuant to Section 185(A) of the Criminal Procedure Act of the State and urged the court to invite the accused persons to take their plea. The presiding judge, Justice Mahmood Gafar obliged the application and the three accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charge.
Oyedepo then asked the court to fix a date for the commencement of trial and remand the accused persons in custody.
Responding, Bashir Oladipo, counsel to the first accused, Sirajudeen Abdullahi, said he was not against the speedy commencement of trial but prayed the court to admit his client to bail as the offence for which he was docked is bailable. “We are mindful that the granting of bail is at the discretion of your Lordship. I urge your Lordship to exercise your discretion in favour of the accused person.” Oladipo submitted.
Counsel to the other accused persons, Y.A. Dikko and O. T. Olorunisola who appeared for Segun Adelodun and John Afolabi respectively, aligned themselves with the position of Oladipo.
However, Oyedepo objected to the oral application for bail. He said there are facts available to the complainant which cannot be presented except under oath. He urged the court to insist on a formal bail application from the respondents to enable the prosecution place facts against the granting of bail before the court.
After listening to the arguments of counsel, Justice Gafar ruled that the defendants file a proper bail application before the court and adjourned to September 11, 2012 for hearing of the bail application.
He also ordered that the accused persons be remanded in Police custody.