A deputy director with the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, Yisa Usman, was, on Tuesday, arraigned at the Federal High Court, Abuja, following allegations of threatening the wife of the JAMB registrar, Raheemat Oloyede.
According to the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CR/139/2023, Usman was accused of threatening Oloyede with the intent to blackmail her husband, Ishaq Oloyede, the board’s Registrar.
He was arraigned by the police on behalf of the Federal Government on a five-count before Justice Nkeonye Maha.
He was also alleged to have committed the offence with Abdulfatai Usman, now at large, between February 14, 2022, and February 15, 2022.
Both of them were said to have communicated with Oloyede through a network computer system with the phone number: +447529723948, and the communication was said to be “grossly offensive, indecent, criminal intimidation with the purpose of causing inconvenience or needless anxiety” to her.
The police also accused Usman of publishing letters between January 31, 2022, and February 4, 2022, through a computer system network on WhatsApp alleging that the JAMB Registrar, Oloyede, and members of the management board of JAMB committed fraud and violated the Federal Government’s regulations “even though he knew such information to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 24(1) (a) & (b) of the Cybercrime Act 2015.”
He, however, pleaded not guilty to all the counts after the charge was read to him.
Following this, his counsel, Moses Balogun, applied for bail. The lawyer informed the court that a bail application filed on June 7 had already been served on the prosecution on the same day.
Balogun, who said that Usman was a deputy director, prayed the court to grant him bail on liberal terms or self-recognition pending the hearing and determination of the case.
Meanwhile, the prosecuting counsel, Eristo Asaph, did not oppose the application.
In a ruling, Justice Maha allowed Usman to bail in the sum of N2 million with a surety who must be a civil servant on level 14 and must own a landed property within the jurisdiction of the court.
Alternatively, the judge held that the surety could also be a responsible citizen who had paid his tax for two years and must have landed property within the jurisdiction of the court.
She said the surety, who must submit his or her international passport and a passport photograph to the court registrar, must submit an affidavit of means.
Justice Maha ordered that Usman be remanded at a correctional centre pending the perfection of his bail and adjourned the matter until October 26 for trial.
But Balogun, who prayed the court to order the release of his client pending the perfection of his bail within five days, pledged to write an undertaking to the effect.
The judge granted the plea and ordered that the undertaking be completed before the close of work.
Reacting to his arraignment, Usman said that his ordeal began after he challenged his deployment from Kaduna to Port Harcourt and the abuse of power wielded by Oloyede.
He said, “I am a 54-year-old physically challenged Deputy Director that suffered the injustices of Prof. Ishaq Oloyede.
“My ordeal started with my deployment to Port-Harcourt from Kaduna despite my condition and in violation of the Disability Act.
“And that was the third posting in five years. My family is in Abuja. I resisted the violation for 20 months before it was reversed following the intervention of the Federal Ministry of Education.
“I petitioned the Ministry and several other agencies about the abuse of authority in JAMB and some financial infractions that I noticed.
“This caused a ministerial fact-finding committee to be set up to investigate my allegations, which were reportedly established.
“Following my redeployment back to Kaduna in February, Prof. Oloyede issued me two queries within 14 days and followed it with an invitation to appear before a panel. The intention was to dismiss me from service, but I did not turn up at the panel. I instead sent a seven-page letter.
“Prior to these developments, I had raised concerns about Prof. Oloyede’s abuse of power and violations of the laws with negative consequences on staff.”
More so, he said, “Prof Oloyede petitioned the IGP in February 2022 that I am a criminal. The investigation was concluded in March, but unexpectedly, I am now charged with five criminal charges and have to appear before the Federal High Court.”