A Special Fraud Unit (SFU) witness, Dr. Kenny Adenugba, on Tuesday told a Lagos Federal High Court, in Lagos, how a former Registrar and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), of Institute of Strategic Management of Nigeria (ISMN), Professor Joseph Mba, forged the institute’s documents.
Adenugba, the Secretary and Chief Executive Officer of ISMN, informed the court that the accused, Prof. Mba, committed the offence eight years after his tenure as the Institute’s Registrar/CEO had expired, and has no authority to represent the institute in any capacity.
Adenugba made revelation while testifying before Justice Saliu Saidu. He was led in in-evidence by the SFU prosecutor, Mr. Effiong Asuquo, a Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) before Justice Saliu Saidu of a Lagos Federal High Court.
Dr. Adenugba who is the SFU’s first witness informed the court that the accused after he was no longer in the service of the institute, went to the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), and filed documents purportedly to change the name of the institute from Institute of Strategic Management of Nigeria (ISMN) to Institute of Strategic Management Nigeria Limited.
The witness also informed the court that the accused also filed a letter of resolution of the Institute appointing one Samuel Ojo as the Institute’s Registrar and legal adviser while the substantive Registrar of the institute as at that time was one Itia Otabor.
He informed the court that the said letters were solely signed by the accused when he was no longer the institute’s Registrar; neither was he a financial member.
He said on discovery of the alleged act of the accused, the institute mandated it’s legal adviser in person of Mr. Lanre Ogunlesi (SAN), to go to CAC and investigate, and to write a petition to the SFU on the professor’s act.
However, lawyer to the accused, Mr. Ike Uko, pleaded for an adjournment to enable him study the witness testimony before cross-examined him.
Consequently, the presiding judge, Justice Saliu Saidu, granted the adjournment application and adjourned the matter till December 7, for the witness’ cross-examination and continuation of trial.
The accused, Professor Mba was first arraigned before the court on February 15, 2016, by the SFU on alleged charges bordering on forging some documents in the name of the Institute of Strategic Management Nigeria.
The professor was alleged to have forged a Special Resolution of the Institute of Strategic Management Nigeria, dated June 11, 2012, with the intention of changing the name of the institution to the Institute of Strategic Management Limited.
He was also alleged to have forged another Special Resolution of the Institute of Strategic Management Nigeria Limited dated June 12, 2012, wherein he stated that one Samuel Ojo, a lawyer, had been appointed as the secretary/legal adviser of the institution.
The two documents were said to have been signed by Dr. Austin Uwandulu.
The police prosecutor, CSP Asuquo had informed the court that the alleged offences are contrary to and punishable under sections 1(2)(c) and 3(1) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, Cap. M17 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.
He had pleaded not guilty to the charges, and is currently on bail.