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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Alleged N170m deal: Zinox blackmailer petitions Osinbajo again

The embattled Managing Director of Ibadan-based Citadel Oracle Concepts, Mr. Benjamin Joseph is not done yet with his alleged mischief, as he reportedly petitioned the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, for a second time record, reports ITRealms.

Information reaching our newsroom, showed that Joseph, has again petitioned Vice President, Osinbajo against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC); the Nigerian Police and the Attorney General of the Federation over his on-going prosecution for false petitioning and deceit by the Police.

ITRealms recalls that Joseph also accused of allegedly blackmailing officials of Zinox Technologies Ltd, over a N170 million contract for the supply of HP laptops awarded to the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).

His prosecution by the Nigerian Police, ITRealms reports, is before an Abuja High Court, which arose after rigorous investigations following his petition five years and precisely 2013, regarding a business transaction with his authorized representative, Princess Kama and ICT products distributors, Technology Distributions Ltd (TD).

ITRealms also gathered that Mr. Joseph had previously petitioned Osinbajo, alleging that his company was used to defraud the Federal Government of over N200m over the non-supply of the said laptops, had recently sent another written petition to the Vice President against the security agencies and the Attorney General’s office.

Further, ITRealms gathered that upon receipt of the first petition, the Vice President had immediately escalated it to the appropriate authority – the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for due investigation, which led to the visit by the Procurement Fraud Unit of the EFCC to the offices of the FIRS and found every unit of the HP laptops supplied with serial numbers nationwide and each unit traced to its respective user.

Further investigations showed the existence of a copy of a Letter of Authority which Joseph issued to the FIRS, with copies of his international passport, accepting the award of the contract for the supply of the HP laptops and appointing his associate, Princess Kama as his authorized representative to handle the transaction.

In addition to the office of the Vice President, Joseph had also petitioned the EFCC, Lagos who investigated and saw no merit in his complaint, especially alleging forgery of his signature on the board resolution to open an account at Access Bank, which investigation proved otherwise, with a forensic analysis confirming that the Board resolution documents were not forged but were actually signed by him, alongside other false claims, leading to the former Inspector General of Police, Solomon Arase, arraigning him for deceit and false petitioning at an Abuja court under Charge Number CR/216/16 at the FCT High Court.

Echika Ezuka, Corporate Communications Advisor to Zinox, disclosed that he is constrained to speak about Benjamin’s case as it is still pending before an Abuja High Court, noting that Zinox had also slammed a N2BN defamation suit on Premium Times which the defendant had been using for his campaign of blackmail.

According to Ezuka, Premium Times is yet to file its defense on the defamation case over two months since it was instituted.

“The on-going case for which Joseph is currently being prosecuted is between Citadel Oracle Concepts and another company which our Chairman has shares in. That company is Technology Distributions (TD), the biggest ICT products distributor in Sub-Saharan African representing major IT brands like HP, Lenovo, Dell, Microsoft and many others. TD is a totally different company from Zinox with different directors, shareholders, management team and a different line of business and Zinox was not in any way involved in the transaction,” he explained.

Chuks Egbune/GEE
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