. Ex-CBN chief urges court to dismiss charge
The battle for lawful custody of the suspended Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele will resume today at the Federal High Court in Lagos.
Two fresh applications by both the banker and the Federal Government will come up for consideration.
The first application – filed by the government on August 3 – is seeking leave to appeal against the July 25 order of vacation judge Justice Nicholas Oweibo which granted Emefiele bail.
The second – filed by Emefiele on August 8 – is asking the court to stop the Federal Government from further prosecuting him on the charge of illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition or any other charge.
The Federal Government filed its application through a Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions of the Federation, Nkiru Jones-Nebo.
In it, the government also asked the court to stay execution of the order remanding Emefiele in the custody of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS) and to make an order remanding him instead in the custody of the State Service Service (SSS).
Vacation judge, Justice Oweibo, had on July 25, granted Emefiele N20million bail on a two-count charge of illegal possession of firearms and ammunition.
He ordered his remand at the Ikoyi Correctional Centre, pending the fulfilment of his bail conditions.
But the SSS rearrested the embattled bank chief after fighting off NCoS officials on the court’s premises.
The second application was filed by Emefiele through his team of counsel led by Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Joseph Daudu.
In it, the banker is also seeking an order of the court discharging him of all charges brought against him by the government, claiming it is in “brazen disobedience” of the subsisting orders of the court granting him bail on July 25, 2023.
He also asked for a further order prohibiting the Federal Government from continuing to enjoy any form of indulgence from the courts except and unless it complies with the bail ruling.
The application was filed under Section 6(6)(a) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), relevant sections of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015 and under the inherent powers of the court.
He further asked Justice Oweibo to stay further proceedings in the present charge until he exhausts all the remedies available to him in law to compel the government and the DSS to obey the order of the court admitting him to bail or remanding him in the custody of the Nigerian Correctional Centre until he perfects his bail terms.
Our correspondent learnt that the application was served on the government Thursday.
The application seeks to invoke the jurisdiction of the court to enforce its orders so as not to be seen “as a toothless bulldog or paper tiger.”
The applicant also argued that the processes seek to preserve and protect the “efficacy, majesty and integrity of the court as well as the rule of law in our democracy.”