African Press International (API)

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Fugitive sets up scholarship fund

Posted by African Press International on April 25, 2007

Windhoek (Namibia) Former United States software executive Jacob Kobi Alexander, who is wanted in the US to face multiple charges of fraud, has set up a scholarship fund in Namibia, two days before the start of his extradition case in Namibian courts, APA learnt Monday.

Namibia’s ministry of education said in a statement Monday that Kobi Alexander, founder and former CEO of Comverse Technology Inc., had set up the Kobi & Hana Alexander Scholarship Fund with his wife to help ’increase academic interest in science and technology’.

The scholarship is worth about 22,000 dollars, the ministry said in a statement. Kobi Alexander has been fighting extradition to the US following his arrest in Namibia last September.

The business mogul has remained holed up in Namibia where he has expressed a desire to stay and pledged to invest more than $15 million dollars.

Kobi Alexander was nabbed last year after U.S. federal charges were filed against him on suspicion of manipulating stock option grant dates.

He is amongst several former Comverse executives accused of backdating millions of stock options to days when the shares were trading at lower prices, allowing executives to reap substantial gains, according to his indictment.

The Namibian government has described Alexander, who is currently free on bail as ’very passionate’ about the country and its people.

“Mr Alexander is very passionate about Namibia and its people. Further to the many investments totalling over N$100 million (about US$15 million) that he intends to bring and make in Namibia for the next five years, he is committing himself to investing in education of Namibia,” said Namibia’s ministry of education.

“It is his firm belief that if developing economies are to be able to compete on the global stage, emphasis should be placed on education, especially in the fields of science and technology.”

Alexander Kobi’s extradition hearing is set for Wednesday this week. Namibia, on the other hand, does not have an extradition treaty with the U.S.

Published by Korir, African Press in Norway, apn,

source.apa

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