In a significant development, the High Court sitting in the Federal Capital Territory has issued an order to remand the former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, in the Kuje Correctional Centre.
This decision was reached pending the determination of his bail request. Emefiele is currently facing charges related to alleged procurement fraud, a case that has garnered significant attention.
The trial, which had previously faced three postponements, finally took place on Friday, marking a crucial milestone in the legal proceedings against the former CBN governor. The Federal Government had initially filed 20 charges against Emefiele in connection with procurement fraud, amounting to a staggering N6.5 billion.
However, it was revealed that the government later reduced the charges to six, involving over N1 billion, upon his arraignment on Friday.
During the proceedings on Friday, Emefiele’s legal counsel, Mathew Burkaa SAN, submitted an application for bail on behalf of his client. In a spirited opposition, the Federal Government’s counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, vehemently contested the notion of granting bail to the former Central Bank governor.
Presiding over the case, Justice Hamza Muazu expressed the need for careful consideration due to the plethora of legal authorities cited by both parties. In light of this complexity, the judge requested some time to thoroughly examine the legal precedents and review the exhibits provided by Emefiele to support his bail application.
Justice Muazu, while withholding his ruling on the bail application, ordered that Godwin Emefiele be remanded at the Kuje Correctional Centre until the determination of his bail request. Consequently, the case has been adjourned to November 22 for the anticipated ruling on the bail application and November 28 for the commencement of the trial itself.
This remand order follows a previous ruling by Justice Olukayode Adeniyi on November 8, which had ordered Emefiele’s release to his legal representatives after the former CBN governor spent 151 days in detention.
The unfolding legal drama surrounding Godwin Emefiele continues to capture the attention of the Nigerian public and legal community alike, and further developments will be closely monitored.