12 February 2019

Nigeria: Court Remands Former SGF Babachir Lawal in EFCC Custody

The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court has ordered that the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, be remanded in the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) custody.

Mr Lawal is facing charges of corruption. He was indicted for allegedly using his companies to get contracts worth millions of naira without executing the contracts.

He was removed from office after he was indicted by a Senate committee which investigated the management of money meant to assist persons displaced by Boko Haram.

Since his removal in 2017 by President Muhammadu Buhari, many Nigerians have called for his prosecution.

Mr Lawal has since his exit been a major campaigner for Mr Buhari's re-election in his home Adamawa State.

The judge on Tuesday, Jude Okeke, gave the remand order following an appeal by Mr Lawal's counsel to grant him bail.

During the court session, the counsel to the first defendant, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Akin Olujimi, had filed an application that his client be granted bail.

But the prosecution counsel, Muhammed Abubakar, argued that the court should not grant the bail application.

In prior to this, Mr Okeke adjourned the matter to Wednesday to rule on the bail application.

The EFCC, on Tuesday, arraigned Mr Lawal before the court on a 10 count charge, bordering on alleged conspiracy and fraud.

They filed the charges against him and Hamidu David, Suleiman Abubakar and two companies Rholavision engineering Ltd and Josmon Technologies Ltd.

Mr Lawal and his accomplice all pleaded not guilty to all the charges when read to them.

Nigeria

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