Ex-Covenant varsity accountant seeks redress over wrongful detention

A former unit accountant at the Strategic Business Unit of Covenant University, Omoyele Oyetomi, has demanded redress for his arrest and detention for a fraud involving one Ayo.

The complainant said his ordeal began after he greeted the said Ayo inside the banking hall of Covenant Microfinance Bank, in the Sango-Ota area of Ogun State.

Oyetomi, who told PUNCH Metro that he was at the microfinance bank for a transaction on Friday, July 21, 2017, said Ayo, whom he greeted inside the banking hall, was said to have carried out fraudulent transactions of over N4m.

The Ondo State indigene said in a bid to apprehend Ayo, who allegedly had disappeared with the money, the management of the microfinance bank, while investigating the fraudulent withdrawals, had invited him and the Director of the Strategic Business Unit, Wuraola Adeleye, after the bank’s CCTV captured the moment when he and Ayo exchanged greetings inside the banking hall.

He said, “I was waiting for the cashier to pay me N53,700, when I saw Ayo coming out of the bank’s cash office; because he was someone I knew, we greeted each other and he left. I was surprised that on Wednesday, September 20, 2017, I was called upon and asked who Ayo was; when the management of the CMFB showed the CCTV footage of both of us greeting, I told them that I knew Ayo when I used to mark scripts for the West African Examinations Council in 2012, but didn’t have his contact details or know how to reach him.

“From the information gathered, Ayo had fraudulently withdrawn N4m twice; his first withdrawal was in June, but because I greeted him when he came to make the second withdrawal in July shouldn’t make me a suspect. I wasn’t the only one that Ayo greeted that day. When the management presented the passport on the mandate form of the account that the money was withdrawn from, I told them I didn’t know the person on the passport, because he wasn’t the same as Ayo.

“So, during our deliberation, it was revealed that one of Covenant Microfinance Bank’s staff activated Café 2’s account that was dormant and transferred over N4m from it into another dormant account belonging to one Taiwo Ojelabi, whose account was immediately activated. Where I worked was the Central Pastry and CU Bakery, one of the 21 units operating under the Strategic Business Unit of Covenant University.”

He added, “All the units under the SBU have their separate accounts with the CMFB, and my unit was totally different from the unit where the money was stolen from. But I was arrested and detained for seven days. Ojelabi, the suspected member of staff of the CMFB and me got to the police station on Thursday, September 21, 2017; the other staff member was released the following day; Ojelabi was released three or four days after, while I was released on Thursday, September 28, 2017, after my lawyer had petitioned the Zone 2 Command, Onikan, Lagos.”

The 41-year-old, who said he was sacked as a result of the incident, lamented that efforts to get a report on the conclusion of the investigation conducted by operatives of the Zone 2 Command in order to clear his name had proved abortive.

Oyetomi stated, “I have done medical tests and documentation for two job offers after I was sacked from the SBU; when referrals were needed, I referred them to the SBU because my conscience is clear, but I won’t hear from the companies again. I believe it is because of the case that I know nothing about, so I am determined to clear my name; and that is why I need the report on the conclusion of the investigation conducted by the operatives of the Zone 2 Command.

“I need the report of the investigation to pursue my rights in the court of law because I want justice. Ever since I got sacked, my family has been struggling to survive. I need a job and without the report, I cannot clear my name. But operatives of Zone 2 have refused to give me the report on the conclusion of their investigation into this matter that has made my life miserable.”

Oyetomi’s counsel, Yemisi Adebayo, who told PUNCH Metro that she had applied for the police report on the investigation conducted by the Zone 2 Command and sent reminders, but had yet to get any response from the command.

When PUNCH Metro visited the Managing Director of Covenant Microfinance Bank,  Mrs Odunola Owolabi, and the Director of the SBU, Mr Wuraola Adeleye, they said before they could grant any interview, a written request had to be sent to the Presiding Bishop, Faith Tabernacle, Canaanland, owners of Covenant University, David Oyedepo,  for approval.

The Public Relations Officer, Zone 2 Command, Dolapo Badmus, told our correspondent to send a text message on the matter. She had yet to respond to the text as of the time of filing this report.



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