Adedibu Ojerinde, former Registrar of Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), on Thursday, asked the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja to order his release from detention.
Ojerinde, who is facing trial for allegedly diverting public funds totalling about N5billion, was on January 26, re-arrested on the premises of the court by operatives of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC).
His arrest came after a former Deputy Director of Finance at the examination body, Mr. Jimoh Olabisi, gave his testimony as the 4th prosecution witness.
Olabisi, in his evidence, made indicting revelations that were not part of the charge already pending against the former JAMB boss.
On Friday, Ojerinde’s lawyer, Mr. Eteya Ogana, drew attention of the court to a motion challenging the manner in which the ICPC re-arrested his client, even as he applied for his release from detention.
Ogana alleged that the anti-corruption agency re-arrested his client without a valid warrant.
However, trial judge, Justice Obiora Egwuatu, upon going through the case file, said he could not find Ojerinde’s fresh application in the court’s record.
Following the development, the defence lawyer, Ogana, subsequently admitted that there was an error in the suit number that was attached to the motion.“The lawyer noted that instead of putting charge number: FHC/ABJ/CR/97/21 in the application, he erroneously wrote FHC/ABJ/CR/74/21, leading to a mix-up in the filing.“He, therefore, prayed for an adjournment to enable him to correct the error.“On its part, the ICPC, through its own lawyer, Mr. Ebenezer Shogunle, refuted the allegation that the ex-JAMB Registrar was re-arrested without a warrant.
“Shogunle urged the court to inspect a warrant he adduced to establish that Ojerinde’s re-arrest and detention had legal backing.“He argued that the fresh application by the defendant had been overtaken by events since he has already been charged before another court on a separate matter.
After he had listened to both sides, Justice Egwuatu adjourned the matter till June 20.“It will be recalled the court had on March 24, adjourned till April 19, to take Ojerinde’s fresh plea on a new charge the ICPC preferred against him and his three sons; Olumide, Adedayo and Oluwaseun.“Equally joined as defendants in the case included his daughter-in-law, Mary Funmilola Ojerinde, as well as five companies; Doyin Ogbohi Petroleum Ltd, Cheng Marbles Ltd, Sapati International Schools Ltd, Trillium Learnings Centre Ltd and Standout Institutes Ltd.