Justice Yetunde Idowu of the Lagos State High Court, Ikeja, has granted leave to the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) to commence proceedings against the comptroller-general of the Nigerian Customs Service, Abdullahi Dikko, for alleged certificate forgery.
The plaintiff, Festus Keyamo, had asked the court to compel the Lagos State DPP to prosecute the Customs boss.
A copy of the order, which was made available to Premium Times shows that Justice Idowu granted the leave after Mr. Keyamo’s motion was moved by his lawyer, Festus Afeiyodion.
Mr. Keyamo alleged that Mr. Dikko forged two certificates of the Nigerian Institute of Management (NIM) (No. 10912 and 10993) and the West African Examination Council (WAEC) (No. NGSG 37836).
“The Director of Public Prosecutions, Lagos State, has a duty under Section 258(a) of the ACJL of Lagos State, 2007, pursuant to information being submitted to him by a private person, to endorse thereon a certificate stating whether or not he is declining to prosecute an accused at the instance of the public.
“The failure of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Lagos State, to endorse a certificate on the information submitted to him by the Applicant on June 29, 2011 amounts to a breach of the statutory duty under Section 258(a) of the ACJL, Lagos State, 2007,” the judge said.
In September, 2009, Olajide Ibrahim, who first brought up the forgery allegations against the customs boss, swore an affidavit in which he disclosed that he knew Mr. Dikko since 1995, while undergoing the compulsory youth service scheme with the Nigerian Institute of Management (NIM).
Mr. Ibrahim claimed he was the officer in charge of the institute’s training and courses department on Plot 22, Idowu Taylor Street, Victoria Island, Lagos.
He also alleged that Mr. Dikko, who was serving then as a Superintendent of Customs, had approached him to sneak out blank programme certificates on finance and accounts for him, which he intended to fill himself and present as authentic certificates because he needed these certificates and many others to get rapid promotion in the service.
Mr. Olajide also said that he obliged the customs chief and secured, in his behalf, the 1995 and 1996 course participant certificates which the customs boss allegedly filled by himself and forged the signatures on them.
All efforts to reach Mr. Dikko’s attorney, Amobi Nzelu, were unsuccessful as both his office and mobile telephones were unreachable.
His office also did not respond to email enquiry.