A former Minister of Power and Steel, Olu Agunloye, has been remanded in the Kuje Correctional Centre, Abuja, over allegations of fraud in the Mambilla Power Project.
The order was issued on Wednesday by an Abuja Federal High Court following his arraignment by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The former minister, when brought before the Federal High Court in Abuja on Wednesday, pleaded not guilty to the charges levelled against him.
However, the judge ordered that he be remanded in the correctional centre, pending the determination of his bail application.
Earlier, Agunloye’s ex-boss, former president Olusegun Obasanjo declared his readiness to testify for Nigeria concerning the defendant in the $2.3 billion disputed Mambilla power contract.
Sunrise Power and Nigeria are at loggerheads at the International Chamber of Commerce, ICC, Paris, France, as the company alleges a breach of contract.
Sunrise Power said it was awarded a $6 billion contract to build, operate, and transfer in May 2003 by the government of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
The company is alleging that the Federal Government of Nigeria repudiated the agreement and is asking for compensation of $2.3 billion.
The company is further claiming that it had already spent millions of dollars on financial and legal consultants before the contract was jettisoned.
However, in its defence, the Nigerian government is alleging fraud and corruption of public officials in the award of the contract.
In his letter to the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Lateef Fagbemi, the counsel to the Nigerian government, the former President expressed his willingness to testify on behalf of the Nigerian government “in any form.”
Meanwhile, a 30-year-old driver, Christopher Otimejin, was on Wednesday arraigned in a Grade 1 Area Court in Kabusa, Abuja, over alleged cheating and breach of trust.
The Prosecutor, C.C. Okafor, had informed the court that Otimejin, a resident of Shara Estate, Abuja, breached a business agreement reached with the complainant, Dooshima Kittikaa.
Okafor alleged that Kittikaa gave her vehicle to the defendant for commercial use, with the agreement that he would remit N35,000 weekly.
The prosecutor further told the court that Otimejin failed to make the remittances as agreed with the complainant.
“After three weeks, he only remitted for two weeks, and he refused to pay the balance of N35,000,” he said.
The prosecutor said the complaint was filed at the Kabusa Police Station, on Jan. 6.
The defendant, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The Judge, Malam Abubakar Sadiq, admitted the defendant to bail in the sum of N100,000, with one surety in like sum and then adjourned the case until Jan. 23, for further mention.