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Drama Looms As Accountant Accuses Ex-Employer, Police Of Harassment

Posted by Samuel on Thu 25th Apr, 2024 -

Oduniyi said he had worked at Idedevbo’s company as the operation manager and accountant from 2014 to 2017 before he was sacked in January 2017 following a disagreement with his boss over office procedures, operations, and rules of engagement, which led to a legal dispute.

Ayodele Oduniyi

Ayodele Oduniyi, an accountant based in Lagos, has leveled accusations against his former employer, Sonny Idedevbo. He alleges that Idedevbo is utilizing the police to harass and prosecute him on purportedly fabricated charges.

Oduniyi said he had worked at Idedevbo’s company as the operation manager and accountant from 2014 to 2017 before he was sacked in January 2017 following a disagreement with his boss over office procedures, operations, and rules of engagement, which led to a legal dispute.

He said, “There was a misunderstanding regarding a project, and he (Idedevbo) insisted on deducting my salary. I refused, suggesting that any errors should be shared among all those involved in the project and that he should not single me out. Consequently, he fired me. Afterwards, I requested my outstanding salary from 2014 to 2017, but he refused to pay. Additionally, he had entrusted money to me in Fidelity Bank, which he had authorized.

“He demanded that I return the money, but I refused, insisting that he should instead pay my outstanding salaries. I sought mediation at the Lagos State mediation centre, but he failed to attend. Instead, he reported the matter to the Idimu Police Station, where the DPO stated that it was a civil matter. The IPO in charge of the case later summoned me, and upon arrival, I was charged with theft at the Ejigbo Magistrates’ Court.”

Oduniyi stated that the police harassment started on February 10, 2020, during a court hearing at the Magistrates’ Court in Ejigbo when he was arrested on the court premises by one Inspector David Daniel and Christopher Ogu from the Federal Investigations Bureau and flown to Abuja, where he was detained for eight days.

“I was eventually released on administrative bail due to the Covid-19 lockdown. I returned to Abuja on January 7, 2021 and I submitted numerous documents to support my defence, proving my innocence regarding the complainant’s claims. Unfortunately, the police officers failed to conduct a thorough investigation and take action against the complainant, who failed to present any evidence supporting his accusations,” he added.

Oduniyi said he was charged to the Federal High Court on November 29, 2021, but the case was dismissed due to lack of jurisdiction, lamenting that he was rearrested outside the court premises by the same policemen and taken to their office.

He explained that he was released on administrative bail to his lawyer after signing an undertaking to appear in Lagos for new charges.

“In March 2022, IPO David Daniel called me to come to Abuja because they had refiled their charge there, contrary to the judgment of Honorable Justice D.U. Okorowo. I insisted they must re-file in Lagos because I can’t attend trials in Abuja when all complainants and defendants reside in Lagos.

“In a show of favouritism towards the complainant, a court restriction was placed on my GT Bank account 0016222815 in 2019, when the case was still at the magistrates’ court in Lagos. They relied on this court restriction. I was then arrested inside GT Bank at Idimu (Lagos) on June 2, 2022, and taken to Abuja for the second time.

“I was detained in their facility for 22 days without access to a lawyer, food, water, and was not charged. It took the intervention of the senator from my state to get me out on administrative bail for the second time. I was diagnosed with an acute ulcer due to the lengthy incarceration, even though the police unit knew I was asthmatic. I was released on administrative bail on June 23, 2022,”
he added.

Oduniyi said the police had pressed a fresh charge bordering on cybercrime and cyberstalking against him, describing the allegation “as strange and a clever way for the prosecution team to confer jurisdiction on the High Court, which lacks jurisdiction over a purported crime committed in Lagos by residents of both parties.”

He said his former employer had refused to appear in court despite multiple invitations, adding that the alleged persecution was taking a toll on him.

“The most significant pain right now is the financial implications and psychological trauma of attending trials in different courts and shuttling between Lagos and Abuja. This is unacceptable. The police took sides in a civil matter and portrayed it as a criminal matter,”
he added.

He called on the police authorities to investigate the matter and take disciplinary action against the police officers being used by his ex-employer.

Idedevbo, who is based abroad, declined comments when contacted by our correspondent, saying the case was in court.

“The case is in court and I will not respond to you. Come to the Federal High Court in Abuja on April 22,”
he stated.

It was learnt that the case did not come up on the said date due to the absence of the presiding judge.

The Force Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, could not be reached as calls made to his mobile phone went unanswered. A text message sent to him had yet to be replied to at the time of filing this report.

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