Friday, November 17, 2023

Ex-central bank chief of Nigeria remanded in custody pending bail hearing

A Nigerian court on Friday remanded former central bank governor Godwin Emefiele in custody on charges of procurement fraud, pending a bail hearing scheduled for Wednesday.

Emefiele applied for bail after pleading not guilty to six new graft charges that accused him of "conferring corrupt advantage". Prosecutors cut the charges from a previous 20-count indictment, which he faced along with two others, so he could be tried separately and quickly.

"The matter is hereby adjourned to Wednesday, November 22, for ruling on the bail application. Meanwhile, the defendant should be remanded in Kuje Correctional Centre pending the ruling on his bail," Justice Hamza Muazu said.

The main trial is set to start on Nov. 28, the judge said.

Last week, Emefiele was granted bail by a separate judge after successfully challenging five months in detention.

Emefiele, who has not commented publicly on the case, was suspended by President Bola Tinubu on June 9 and was arrested a day later.

He resigned in August while in detention, paving the way for the appointment of new central bank governor Olayemi Cardoso in September. 

By Camillus Eboh, Reuters

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