Oladapo Oyebanji, best known by his stage as D’banj, has been detained by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).
The artist was reportedly apprehended and held on Tuesday after ICPC agents reportedly closed in on him and forced him to turn himself in at the organization’s headquarters in Abuja, the capital of Nigeria, according to individuals familiar with the situation.
Insiders said that D’banj had evaded summonses for weeks by stating that he was abroad for booked performances each time he was asked to show up for an interview over a fraud charge.
The pop musician, a famous and rich Nigerian, is charged with defrauding the Nigerian government out of hundreds of naira intended for the N-Power project, an empowerment initiative launched by the Nigerian government in 2016 to combat young unemployment and advance social development.
Investigators contend that D’banj conspired with certain tainted government officials to add fictitious beneficiaries to the scheme’s payroll.
Then, the recipients get payments into accounts that are now purportedly connected to the pop star.
The ICPC sought to arrest the artist anywhere in Nigeria and overseas after he repeatedly declined invitations to appear for questioning; as a result, he was forced to appear at the commission’s headquarters on Tuesday.
D’banj was held following a protracted questioning that began when he arrived. Officials denied his request for administrative bail because they believed the singer could not be trusted to appear at his trial if released on bond.
Additionally, it was heard that the ICPC could ask the court for an extension of the musician’s detention so the agency can finish its investigation before bringing the case against him to court.
Some Nigerians have responded to the news of his detention by posting their thoughts in the blog comments area.
What does a pop singer have to do with government subsidies, said Theexcuslivelifeofoyin?
How did he have access to the government’s money before stealing them, Bukkylawal asked?
Na dem,” wrote Akpamoney. He should be imprisoned for life.
Savagery001: Muddy young politicians.
According to his Wikipedia page, D’banj, 42, also known as the Kokomaster, was born in Zaria, Kaduna State, north-west Nigeria, on June 9, 1980, to a military officer who oversaw an artillery regiment and a businesswoman from Shagamu, Ogun State, south-west Nigeria.
D’banj has been a part of the thriving Nigerian music scene since 2004 as a songwriter, singer, rapper, and television personality. He performs R&B, pop, hip-hop, and afrobeat music.