Ilorin-based Pastor Accused of Defrauding Kwara Varsity of N19.3 Million

Justice Funsho Lawal of the Kwara State High Court in Ilorin has arraigned an individual named Temidayo Eseyin for allegedly defrauding Landmark University, located in Omu-Aran, Kwara State, of the sum of N19.3 million. Eseyin, who is described as an associate pastor affiliated with the Living Faith Church (Winners Chapel), has been charged by the Ilorin Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) with four counts related to the dishonest misappropriation of funds belonging to Landmark University.

According to the EFCC, Eseyin, who also works as a lawyer and previously served as a member of the Disciplinary Committee of the Nigerian Bar Association in Ilorin, had access to the university’s properties, title documents, and funds while acting as counsel/attorney for Landmark University. The petition to the EFCC alleges that Eseyin engaged in acts of cheating, defrauding, misappropriation, and shortchanging of his client.

One specific incident cited in the charges relates to Eseyin’s alleged management of a property known as the “Old Midland Building,” owned by Landmark University and located along Emir’s/Obbo Road in Ilorin. Eseyin is accused of collecting rents for this property over an eight-year period but failing to produce the collected funds when questioned. The petitioner also claims that Eseyin attempted to sell the property without authorization from the university, leading to the submission of the petition to the EFCC.

Count three of the charge against Eseyin states that he dishonestly misappropriated the sum of Six Million, Sixty Four Thousand Naira Only (6,064,000) in 2021, which represents the payment of rent for the Old Midland Building owned by Landmark University. This offense is said to contravene Section 308 of the Penal Code Law and is punishable under Section 309 of the same law.

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Upon entering a plea of not guilty, Eseyin’s counsel, Femi Makinde, requested bail for the defendant while the EFCC’s counsel, Rashidat Alao, urged the court to fix a trial date and remand Eseyin in the custody of the Nigerian Correctional Centre until the trial. Justice Lawal, after considering the bail application, granted bail to Eseyin in the sum of N10 million, with two sureties each providing N5 million. The sureties must possess landed property within the court’s jurisdiction. The judge adjourned the case to a later date, to be communicated to the parties involved, and ordered that Eseyin be held in EFCC custody until his bail conditions are fulfilled.

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