THE Federal High Court in Abuja has granted N500 million bail to ex-Imo State governor and a presidential aspirant under the All Progressives Congress (APC) Rochas Okorocha.
Justice Inyang Ekwo, in a ruling, rejected the objectIon of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to Okorocha’s bail application.
The EFCC arraigned Okorocha before the Abuja Federal High Court on May 30, during which pleaded not guilty to money laundering charges, involving N2.9 billion.
The court ordered his detention in EFCC custody but when, in a ruling on May 31, Justice Ekwo granted the former governor bail in the sum of N500 million and a surety in like sum.
Justice Ekwo ordered that the surety to be produced by Okorocha must be a responsible citizen who has landed property in the like sum of the bail granted to him.
The judge also directed Okorocha to deposit his international passport with the court’s registry and should not travel outside the court’s jurisdiction without the court’s permission.
In addition, he ordered the court registry to inform the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) that Okorocha’s international passport was in its custody.
Justice Ekwo, however, ordered that the former governor should remain in the custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) until his bail conditions were met.
The judge also granted bail to Okorocha’s co-defendant, Anyim Nyerere Chinenye, on the conditions attached to the administrative bail earlier granted him by the EFCC.
The Trial is to commence on November 7.
The former governor is being tried on a 17-count charge bordering on money laundering to the tune of N2.9 billion.