Embattled past governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Godwin Emefiele was, on Friday, re-arraigned before Justice Hamza Muazu of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Recall that on Thursday, the EFCC brought an amended 20-count charge against Emefiele. The charge which was formerly six counts, has now been increased to 20 counts.
The amended charge borders on criminal breach of trust, forgery, conspiracy to commit forgery, procurement fraud and conspiracy to commit a felony.
The court, however, specified that Emefiele must stay within the country, adhering to the bail terms that restrict his movements to the Federal Capital Territory.
Count 1 of the amended charge obtained by our correspondent read: “Conferring corrupt advantage contrary to Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act 2000.
“The particulars of the offence are that you, Godwin Ifeanyi Emefiele, male, adult, sometime in 2019 did use your position as Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria to confer a corrupt advantage on Sa’aclatu Ramallan Yaro, a staff of the Central Bank of Nigeria by awarding a contract for the supply of 37 (Nos.) Toyota Hilux Vehicles at the cost of N854,700,000 only to April 1616 Investment Ltd, a company in which the said Sa’adatu Ramallan Yaro is a Director and you thereby committed an offence.”
Count 7: “Conferring corrupt advantage contrary to Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act 2000.”
“The offence particulars are that you, Godwin Ifeanyi Emeiele, male, adult, sometime in December 2014 within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did use your position as Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to confer a corrupt advantage on your wife, Omoile Margret, and brother-in-law Omoile Macombo by awarding a contract for the total renovation of the CBN Governor’s Residence lying, being and situate at No. 2 Glover Road, Ikoyi, Lagos in the sum of Eighty Two Milion, Eighty-Six Thousand, One Hundred and Twenty-Nine Naira, Thirty Kobo (N 82,086,129.30) to Messrs. Architekon Nigeria Limited, a company wherein the duo are directors and majority shareholders and you thereby committed an offence”.
Count 17: “Conspiracy to commit felony to wit: forgery contrary to section 96 (1) and punishable under section 364 of the Penal Code Law, Cap 89 Laws of the Federation, 1990”.
“The offence particulars are, That you, Godwin Ifeanyi Emefiele male, adult, and Odoh, Eric Ocheme (Still at large) sometime in January 2023 in Abuja, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court agreed amongst yourselves to cause to be done an illegal act to wit: forgery of a document titled: RE: PRESIDENTIAL DIRECTIVE ON FOREIGN ELECTION OBSERVER MISSIONS dated 26 January 2023 with Ref No. SGF.43/L.01/201 and you thereby committed an offence”.
In the charge marked CR/577/2023, Emefiele was accused of using his position as the CBN governor to award six different contracts to Sa’adatu Ramalan Yero, a CBN staff member, between 2018 and 2020 to the tune of N1,210,600,000.
The procurement contracts were awarded to a company in which the said Sa’adatu Ramalan Yero is a director.
On the resumed matter today, the prosecution retained the previous six-count charge against the former CBN chief, it added 14 other counts to the charge.
Following his no-guilty plea, the prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo SAN, asked for a date for trial.
Emefiele’s counsel, Mathew Burkaa SAN, however, pleaded with the court to allow his client to continue to enjoy the bail earlier granted him on November 22, 2023.
The prosecution did not object to this application. Oyedepo, however, said the prosecution was only interested in Emefiele attending court for trial.
The court subsequently ordered the former CBN governor to continue to enjoy his bail as granted by the court.
Shortly after taking his plea, trial judge Hamza Muazu adjourned the case till February 12 and 13, 2024 for the commencement of trial.