THE police on Tuesday arraigned two officials of the Oyo State Government at an Iwo Road Chief Magistrates’ Court, Ibadan, for allegedly stealing and selling 40 bags of sugar from the state’s COVID-19 palliatives.
The defendants are a 50-year-old driver, Adebiyi Azeez, and Sunday Akinleye, a 43-year-old Assistant Protocol Officer in charge of palliatives at the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the defendants were charged alongside a trader, Kafayat Babalola, for allegedly receiving and buying the stolen items.
The defendants are facing a three-count charge of conspiracy, stealing and receiving stolen goods.
Prosecutor ASP Sunday Ogunremi told the court that Adebiyi and Akinleye conspired to commit the offences.
Ogunremi said: “Adebiyi and Akinleye stole 40 bags of Dangote Sugar, valued at N60,000, being COVID-19 palliatives and property of Oyo State Government.
“The duo used the official vehicle of the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs to convey the goods to the buyer.
“The third defendant, Mrs. Kafayat Babalola, a trader at Agbeni market, Ibadan, received the 40 bags of sugar, knowing that they were not for sale, being property of the state government,” said Ogunremi.
He said the offence contravened sections 516, 390 (9) and 427 of the Criminal Code of Oyo State, 2000.
Ogunremi said the offence was committed on December 30 at the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Secretariat, Ibadan.
The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty.
Chief Magistrate Mr. Taiwo Oladiran granted the defendants bail in the sum of N20,000 each, with two sureties each in like sum.
He adjourned the matter till February 8 for hearing.