Former CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, has been remanded in Kuje Correctional Facility pending a ruling on his bail application by a Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court in Maitama, Abuja.
Justice Hamza Muazu issued the order following Emefiele’s arraignment and plea of not guilty to the six-count amended charge filed by the Director of Public Prosecution of the Federation, DPPF.
A charge marked CR/577/2023 accuses him of “conferring corrupt advantage” contrary to Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act 2000.
Emefiele’s bail application was adjourned till November 22 for a decision on the bail application and November 28 for trial.
Emefiele’s lawyer, Matthew Burkaa (SAN), argued that Emefiele had suffered too long in the custody of the Federal Government, which held him for 151 days, making the court exercise its discretion in his favour.
According to Burkaa, the initial bail was a temporary relief because Emefiele had suffered unduly while in custody since Justice Olukayode Adeniyi (also of the FCT High Court) granted him earlier in the proceedings.
He claimed that the prosecution had not provided any evidence supporting its claim that Emefiele would jump bail, while the defendant had provided enough evidence to support such a claim.
In a counter-reaction, a prosecutor’s lawyer, Rotimi Oyedepo (SAN), urged the court to reject the bail application instead of granting an accelerated hearing.
Oyedepo assured that the prosecution would handle the case promptly.
He said the prosecution plans to call five witnesses in all, even though it listed eight.
Oyedepo said the prosecution was ready to commence trial at any date chosen by the court.
He argued that the order for bail earlier granted was in respect of a fundamental rights enforcement suit, while this one is a criminal prosecution.