The Federal Government has filed a fresh 20-count charge at the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Abuja, against the suspended governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele.
The new charges came after the prosecution applied to withdraw the “illegal possession of firearms” case it had previously filed against Mr Emefiele at the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos.
Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Federal Ministry of Justice, Mohammed Bakodo Abubakar told Justice Nicholas Oweibo in an oral application that the move (the withdrawal-cum-substitution of the original suit) followed the result of further investigations. He provided no details on the new charges against Mr Emefiele.
But defence counsel, Joseph Daudu (SAN) opposed him, arguing that because the government was in disobedience of the court’s order granting Mr Emefiele bail, its application could not be taken.
The judge had fixed today, Tuesday, August 15, for the hearing of applications seeking to stop further prosecution of the suspended CBN boss, and that of the Ministry of Justice seeking to appeal the bail granted to him by the court.
Mr Emefiele was admitted to a N20million bail on a two-count charge of illegal possession of firearms and ammunition and was remanded at the Ikoyi Correctional Centre, pending the fulfillment of his bail conditions.
But the DSS rearrested the embattled bank chief after fighting off NCoS officials on the court’s premises.
Reporting by Wahab Akinlade; Editing by Hadiza Abdulrahman, Daniel Adejo and Tony Okerafor