Nigeria

Court orders police to investigate OGFZA officials for forgery

An Abuja Magistrate Court, sitting in Wuse Zone 2 has ordered the Federal Capital Territory Commissioner of Police to investigate two top officials of the Oil and Gas Free Zone Authority (OGFZA), Mr Wasiu Sule, the Head of Legal Services and Secretary to OGFZA’s Board and Mr Alenju Ngofa, who is the Head of Human Resource of the organisation, for alleged forgery.

A copy of the Magistrate’s order dated 18th March 2021 was obtained by newsmen.

The Magistrate also ordered the FCT police commissioner to file a First Information Report against the two defendants for alleged forgery.

He gave the FCT police commissioner three weeks to execute the order.

The court gave the order after counsel to the nominal complainant, Nkereuwem Akpan, informed the court that the accused persons had evaded service of court processes on them despite several attempts.

Following the expiration of the three weeks, Magistrate Mabel Segun-Bello has now fixed July 23 for the police to produce the suspects for arraignment.

The arraignment could have taken place earlier but for the 64-day industrial action embarked upon by the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN).

The case followed a complaint by a staff of (OGFZA), Mr Olufunmilayo David Omosule, who was victimized after exposing corruption in the organisation.

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OGFZA and Omosule had been locked in a legal battle over the legality or otherwise of the latter’s suspension, following his petition against some management staff of the agency on alleged corruption.

Omosule had alleged that the defendants wilfully and maliciously distorted his records “to appear as though he does not possess any requisite qualification to be employed at OGFZA or any qualification at all to be considered for promotion.”

He said their action was tantamount to forgery and falsification of documents contrary to Section 363 and 364 of the Penal Code, which is detrimental and injurious to his person.

The agency had via a letter dated April 18, 2011, suspended Omosule as the manager of its Abuja office, on the grounds that he refused to comply with its letter dated Dec. 3, 2010, which had directed him to present the originals of his credentials for verification.

Omosule, however, refuted the claim of the authority, stating that he made available to the organisation, Certified True Copies (CTCs) of his educational certificates /credentials, including GCE ‘O Level certificates and degree certificates as instructed.

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Omosule had claimed that the originals of his credentials were misplaced in untraceable circumstances as at 2010 when the report to submit originals was made.

He also averred that the CTCs of his certificates submitted to the agency were certified by the issuing institutions, which included West African Examination Council and the University of Ado-Ekiti, then Ondo State University, Ado-Ekiti respectively.

In a civil suit, Omosule is seeking the court ‘s declaration that he is still a staff of the organisation and entitled to all the rights, privileges and benefits due to him by reason of his employment.

He is praying the court for an order directing the defendant to reinstate him to the position of a director, on grade level 17, a position he claimed his contemporaries were currently.

Omosule is equally seeking an order of the court to direct the agency to pay all his outstanding salaries, benefits and entitlement since 2011.

In addition, he is asking the court to order the organisation to pay him N50 million as exemplary and general damages.

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