Story By Gbenga Ogunbufunmi
Men of the Police Special Fraud Unit (PSFU) have asked the Federal High Court, sitting in Lagos to dismiss a fundamental rights enforcement suit filed by Professor Abayomi Sunday Fasina, the Vice Chancellor of Federal University, Oye-Ekiti, Ekiti State, (FUOYE) and two others.
Professor Fasina alongside Mrs. Bridget Oyaola and Mr. Sulaiman Olajide Usman, both the University’s Acting Director of Works and Chief Internal Auditor, have dragged the Commissioner of Police (PSFU); CP Anderson A. Bankole and Supol Sunday Akeregun in a fundamental rights Enforcement suit marked FHC/L/CS/684/2021, asking many reliefs.
Among the reliefs sought include a declaration that they are entitle to know and be inform of the details of any Investigation against them by the police and a declaration that physical invasion of the University’s premises by the respondents in an attempt arrest and detain the Vice Chancellor in a manner unknown to law, constitute a flagrant violation of their rights as guarantee by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The Vice Chancellor and others also asked the court to award the cost of N50 million being general, aggravated and exmplary damages against the respondents, jointly or severally for the violation of their fundamental rights.
However, the police in a counter-affidavit deposed to by Supol Segun Akeregun, filed by it’s Counsel, Chukwu Agwu, asked the court to dismiss the applicants’ suit for being frivolous and abuse of court process.
The deponent averred that it is untrue that the police invaded the premises of the Vice Chancellor on June 17 and 18, 2021, or any day at all, but only visited the University’s premises to serve an invitation to the Vice Chancellor over some criminal allegations which the police were investigating.
He also stated that the petition against the applicants is not only in respect of frauds allegedly perpetrated as Vice Chancellor from February 2021, but includes his tenure from 2017, when he was Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of Administration till February, 2021 when he became the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University. And that the Vice Chancellor has been heading more than eleven (11) committees as Deputy Vice Chancellor from 2017 to February, 2021
before he became the Vice Chancellor and these committees deal with contracts and other financial engagements.
The deponent also averred that the Vice Chancellor as the then Chairman of TETfund Committee of the University and about other 10 committees, allegedly fraudulently converted to himself and laundered about N13,864,925.00 through his son, Fasina Oluwadamilola Tosin, who is a Post- graduate student at Sterling University, Scotland.
The deponent averred that it’s untrue that the applicants are being or about to be intimidated, do not investigate civil transaction(s) and we have not introduced any criminal element in any civil matter. The Applicants are yet to honour our invitation. The petition and documents before my office relate to criminal infractions allegedly committed by the Applicants.
Furthermore, the deponent stated that from the available documents in our record obtained in the course of investigation of the petition against the applicants revealed that the Vice Chancellor is involved in fraudulent conversion of funds from Ekiti State University as salaries while he was still receiving salaries as Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of Administration at Federal University Oye-Ekiti.
It was also stated that it is only a comprehensive and a complete Police investigation that will determine whether or not the applicants are culpable. Adding that the applicants filed the suit to intimidate and circumvent Police investigation and possibly to escape the long arm of justice.
The deponent while asking the court to dismiss the applicants suit with huge cost as described it as being frivolous, hoodwink.
Meanwhile, Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke, has fixed September 20, 2021, for hearing of all processes in the suit.
The judge fixed the date following the request by the applicants’ counsel, Mr. Ebunolu Adegboruwa (SAN), who informed the court that he was just being served with the respondents’ court while in court.