A Court of Appeal sitting in Akure, Ondo State, has dismissed the appeal of Richard Akindele, the lecturer sacked by Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, for demanding sex from his student, Monica Osagie.
Akindele had approached the appeal court to challenge his trial and conviction at the Federal High Court in Osogbo, Osun State, following a matter filed by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC).
Recall that in 2018 Akindele was caught on tape demanding sex to upgrade the marks of Ms Osagie, a Masters student at OAU. The leaked tape generated furore which led to his dismissal from the citadel of learning after an investigative panel set up by the institution found him guilty of misconduct.
He was later arraigned before Maurine Onyetenu at a Federal High Court in Osogbo on a four-count charge by ICPC, alleging him to have committed an offence contrary to Section A (1)(2) of the corrupt practices and other related offences Act.
Mrs Onyetenu found him guilty and sentenced him to 24 months in prison. He served his sentence in Ilesa prison.
Not pleased with his conviction and sentence, Mr Akindele through his counsel, O. A. Ijatuyi, approached an appeal court in Akure. He argued that the offence bordered on sexual harassment in the workplace and could only be tried by the National Industrial Court by virtue of section 254 of the constitution.
This was countered by the respondent by ICPC counsel, E.A. Shogunle.
Delivering judgment on Friday in appeal no: CA/AK/80c/2019 Prof Richard Akindele v FRN, the court said the jurisdiction of the National Industrial Court in criminal matters is not exclusive.