Nigerian govt drags Surveyors Council’s President, Agbenla to court

The Federal Government has dragged to court the President in Council, Surveyors Council of Nigeria (SCN), Joseph Olorunjuwon Agbenla for alleged abuse of office.

Agbenla retired as the Permanent Secretary / Surveyor General, Lagos State.

He is accused of receiving about N5 million as allowances for conferences not attended.

The four-count charge, marked: CR/1124/2019, now before the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in Zuba, Abuja was filed by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC).

On Tuesday, Agbenla was not in court for his arraignment, The Nation reports.

Prosecution lawyer, Evans Peters said the defendant was absent in court even when he had been served with the charge.

Defence lawyer, O. O. Poroye said Agbenla was absent because he was just recuperating from an accident.

The defence lawyer also told the court that his client has repaid the money involved in the case and was working on an out of court settlement.

Justice Obong explained that the Agbenla needed to be in court and adjourned until February 10, 2020 for arraignment.

The charge reads in part: “That you, Survey Joseph Olorunjuwon Agbenla (M) on the 19th December, 2017 or thereabouts, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, being a public officer with the Surveyors Council of Nigeria, conferred corrupt advantage upon yourself when you received the sum of N2,500,000 paid into your Guarantee Trust Bank account Number 0108278960 through bank transfers from one Ezekiel Okunola on behalf of the Surveyors Council of Nigeria as Duty Tour Allowance and other expenses for a monitoring and evaluation exercise to the South region of Nigeria, but failed to embark on the said tour, but rather claimed to have used the money for other personal purposes, and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.”

“That you Surveyor Joseph Olorunjuwon Agbenla (M) on the 19th April, 2018 or thereabouts, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court being a public officer with the Surveyors Council of Nigeria conferred corrupt advantage upon yourself when you received the sum of N2,410,000 through your Guarantee Trust Bank Account 0108278960 through bank transfers from one Ezekiel Okunola on behalf of Surveyors Council of Nigeria to enable you attend the 2018 International Federation of Surveyors conference which was held in Turkey, but which you failed to attend rather claimed to have used the money for other personal purposes”

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