THE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Monday, November 6, failed to produce the former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, in court for the hearing of his motion on fundamental rights enforcement.
The action violates trial judge Olukayode Adeniyi’s directive to the anti-graft agency to either present the former CBN governor in person for the hearing of a request on his bail or release him unconditionally.
This came days after the State Security Service (SSS) released him in October, and the EFCC later arrested him.
The court has adjourned till Wednesday, November 8, to hear Emefiele’s application on notice and give his attorney time to provide more documentation.
Additionally, the judge reiterated his directive from November 2, calling for Emefiele’s unconditional release.
On November 2, Adeniyi gave the anti-graft agency an order to either produce Emefiele in court to get bail or release him unconditionally.
However, at the resumed proceeding in the matter, Emefiele’s lawyer, Mathew Burkaa, told the court that EFCC defied the order.
Emefiele, detained since June 9, filed a request with the court to uphold his fundamental human rights.
In addition to pleading for his quick release from EFCC custody, he is asking the court to grant him N5 million in damages.
A High Court in Abuja on July 14 nullified the arrest, detention, and interrogation of Emefiele by the DSS.
The court, presided by Bello Kawu, ordered his release and described his arrest and detention as illegal.
Emefiele had filed a motion against his arrest and detention with the Incorporated Trustees of Forum for Accountability and Good Leadership, the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Inspector-General of Police, State Security Service (SSS), and the Central Bank of Nigeria as respondents.
Kawu, delivering judgment, held that the arrest, detention and interrogation of the former CBN governor violated the subsisting decision and orders of M. A. Hassan, a judge in Suit No. FCT/HC/GAR/CV/41/2022.
The court also granted an injunction restraining the security agencies, particularly the SSS, from interfering with his liberty and freedom of movement or taking other steps against him.
The judgment came barely 24 hours after another High Court in Abuja had ordered the release of the suspended CBN governor.
The ICIR had reported that the Abuja High Court ordered the SSS to file charges against Emefiele or release him within one week.