Court orders ex-JAMB registrar Ojerinde to pay witnesses N100,000

Dibu Ojerinde

A Federal High Court in Abuja on Friday ordered former registrar of the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) Prof. Dibu Ojerinde to pay prosecution witnesses N100,000 as transport expenses.

Justice Obiora Egwuatu gave the order while ruling in an application for adjournment made by Ojerinde’s new lawyer, Doyin Awoyale.

Ojerinde is being tried by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) for alleged diversion of over N5.2billion public funds.

Lead prosecuting counsel Ebenezer Sogunle had said one of the witnesses travelled at great risk from Ibadan the previous day. He noted that the last three adjournments have been at the instance of the defence.

He however added that should the court choose to grant the defence lawyer’s request, it should be on the condition that the defendant pays the prosecution witness’ expenses as provided in Section 251 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA).

Mr Awoyale initially objected to the prosecution’s request that his client pays the cost of bringing its witnesses to court, he later changed his mind upon the judge’s intervention.

In a ruling, Justice Egwuatu granted the defence’s prayer for an adjournment and proceeded to order it to pay N100,000 to the prosecution, as witness’ expenses, on or before October 11.

The judge then adjourned till February 8, 2022, for the commencement of trial.