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Naira printing: Emefiele pleads not guilty, secures N300m bail

The embattled former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, on Wednesday, pleaded not guilty to the allegation that he unlawfully printed Naira Notes while he held sway at the apex bank.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, alleged that Emefiele had without authorization from former President Muhammadu Buhari, printed N684million Notes with the total sum of N18.96billion.

Besides, the anti-graft agency accused the former CBN boss of unlawfully approving the withdrawal of about N124.8bn from the consolidated revenue fund.

According to the EFCC, the defendant, acting in violation of law and “with intent to cause injury to the public,” okayed the printing of naira notes without the approval of both former President Buhari and the board of the CBN.

However, when the four-count charge was read to the defendant before trial Justice Maryann Anenih of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, he pleaded his innocence to the allegation.

While the prosecution counsel, Mr. Rotimi Oyedepo, SAN, requested for a date for the commencement of full hearing in the matter, the defendant, through his team of lawyers led by Mr. Mahmud Magaji, prayed the court to allow him to go home on bail, pending the determination of the case against him.

Magaji, SAN, urged the court to either grant his client bail on self recognition, or to adopt previous conditions that were handed to him by Justice Hamza Muazu, who is presiding over another charge that is pending against him before the same high court.

He assured that his client would always be available to attend his trial, noting that the charge contained bailable offences.

In her ruling, Justice Anenih said she was minded to accede to the defendant’s request for bail.

Consequently, she granted him bail to the tune of N300m, with two sureties in the like sum.

More so, the court stressed that the sureties must deposit an affidavit of means, even as it ordered the defendant to surrender his international passport.

The court warned that the former CBN Governor must not travel out of the country without permission.

It held that he should be remanded at Kuje prison, pending the perfection of all the bail conditions.

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