By Uche Amunike
The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offenses Commission (ICPC), has re-arrested a former registrar of the Joint Admissions Education Board, (JAMB), Prof Dibu Ojerinde, Thursday, in Abuja.
He was arrested after the Federal High Court in Abuja issued a warrant to that effect. He is to face a team of investigators concerning new evidence discovered in respect to his ongoing trial for diversion of funds by his office, while he was still a public officer.
Speaking , through a statement released by the ICPC Spokesperson, Azuka Ogugua, stated that it was discovered by their operatives that two different accounts were opened under the names, Trillium Learning Centre Ltd and Sapati International Schools Ltd. Funds were regularly diverted into these accounts with fake names of students.
She recalled that on December 12, 2022 the anti- graft commission invited Dibu Ojerinde for questioning, after they got the new evidence against him. He sent a letter to them through his lawyers, asking them for 14 days grace to enable him honour their invitation. The former JAMB Registrar, however, ended up not honouring their invitation as promised by his lawyer after the expiration of the 14 days grace on December 27, 2022.
During the ongoing investigation, the ICPC stumbled on new evidence that indicated that Dibu Ojerinde is the sole signatory to numerous bank accounts operated in the name of Trillium Learning Centre Ltd and Sapati International School Ltd, where he reportedly used false identities and forged documents to operate the said accounts. The false names are Joshua Olakulehin Olaniran and Akanbi Lamidi. Then, the fake name he used in operating another separate account named Standout Institutes Ltd, is Adeniyi Banji.
So far, the cheque books of the companies’ accounts have been recovered from the embattled Dibu Ojerinde, who has already been taken into the custody of the headquarters of the ICPC agency.
There is also a likelihood that he will be prosecuted before a court of competent jurisdiction for offenses bordering on forgery of documents, money laundering, concealment of gratification and stolen identity, if the new evidence is confirmed.
Presently, he is being prosecuted by the commission at the Federal High Court, Abuja and Federal High Court, Minna on 18 counts bordering on abuse of office and fraud, to the tune of N10 billion while serving two heads of two government agencies, namely, the National Examination Council (NECO) and the Joint Admissions Matriculation Board, JAMB.
While he was head of JAMB and NECO, he allegedly conferred corrupt advantages upon himself so many times, thereby violating sections 19, 24, 25 (1)(a) and (b) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offenses Act 2000 and Section 1(1)(b) of the Advance Fee Fraud Act 2006.
The officers of the anti-grant agency swooped in on him and whisked him away as he was being led out of the court by one of his sons to the parking lot, after the court had adjourned trial proceedings to February 15.