The arraignment of Godwin Emefiele, the embattled ex-governor of the central bank of Nigeria, over N6.9bn alleged procurement fraud, was stalled again on Wednesday after he did not show up at the Federal Capital Territory High Court.
The court is currently sitting, but Emiefele’s case is neither listed nor mentioned, and the court has kept mum over the arraignment and no date slated for adjournment.
However, there are speculations that Emiefele may be seeking a plea bargain.
It would be recalled that on August 17, the arraignment of Emiefele was stalled due to the absence of his co-defendant, a CBN staff member Sa’adatu Yaro and her company, April 1616 Investment Limited, listed as the second and third defendants on the matter.
Yaro, currently in DSS custody, is said to be ill and could not appear in court. Justice Hamza Mu’azu then adjourned the matter after all parties agreedAugust 23t 23.
Emiefele will, alongside Yaro, be arraignedAugust 23t 23 for his alleged involvement in an alleged ₦6.9 billion procurement fraud.
The federal government had initially charged the embattled CBN governor for illegal possession of firearms, but on Tuesday 15, asked the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos to withdraw the unlawful possession of firearms charges following its investigations.
The government then filed a fresh 20-count charge against Emiefele at the FCT High Court. Emiefele is facing legal action for procurement fraud, conspiracy, and providing corrupt benefits to his accomplices with Yaro and her business.
The offence contradicts Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act 2000m. If found guilty of the charge of corrupt enrichment, the suspended CBN governor could be sentenced to five years imprisonment without the option of a fine.