A Federal High Court in Lagos presided over by Justice Mojisola Olatoregun on Wednesday granted bail to former Ekiti State Governor, Chief Ayodele Fayose who is facing charges of corruption brought against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
She granted him bail in the sun of N50m with two sureties in like sum.
Each of the sureties must produce three years tax clearance and one of them should also have a landed property in Lagos.
Justice Olatoregun granted the bail application argued by Fayose’s lead counsel, Mr. Kanu Agabi (SAN).
An operative of the EFCC, Zakari Ibrahim had opposed the bail application on the ground that Fayose could tamper with the matter as the agency was still investigating where the proceeds of the money in question were spent.
He also argued that when Fayose submitted himself to the agency last week, he bombarded the place with hoodlums who could foment trouble.
However, Agabi said since Fayose submitted himself voluntarily to the EFCC, there was no way he could jump bail and tamper with investigations.
He also recalled that at the end of Fayose”s first term in office when he had issues with the EFCC, he also submitted himself to the agency and saw through the trial to a logical conclusion.
Justice Olatoregun held that despite the objections of the EFCC, she was inclined to grant the bail request.
Trial date is fixed for November 18, 2018.
On Monday, in his first appearance before Justice Olatoregun, prosecution counsel to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Rotimi Oyedepo, had pleaded the court that Fayose should be remanded in prison custody pending a trial date.
Fayose, alongside his company, Spotless Limited, was arraigned on an 11-count charge bordering on fraud and money laundering to the tune of N2.2bn.
The former governor is facing trial in connection with N1.299 billion and $5.3 million allegedly allocated to him out of the N4.65 billion slush fund shared by the Office of the National Security Adviser, ONSA, through a former Minister of State for Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro, according to an EFCC statement.
EFCC alleged that, “Fayose acquired properties in some parts of Lagos and Abuja from the money, which was released for his 2014 governorship campaign”.
“That you, Mr. Ayodele Fayose and Mr. Abiodun Agbele (now facing another charge) on or about 17th June, 2014 in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, took possession of the sum of N1, 219, 000, 000.00 (One Billion, Two Hundred and Nineteen Million Naira) to fund your 2014 gubernatorial campaign in Ekiti State, which sum you reasonably ought to have known formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful act to wit: criminal breach of trust/stealing and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15 (2) (d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended) and punishable under Section 15 (3) and (4) of the same Act.”
“That you, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, on or about 17th June, 2014 in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, without going through the financial institution received cash payment in the sum of $5, 000, 000 (Five Million Dollars) from Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, the then Minister of State for Defence, which sum exceeded the amount authorized by law and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Sections 1 and 16 (d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended) and punishable under Section 16 (2) (b) of the same Act,” EFCC counts read against Fayose in court on Monday.
However, the defendant pleaded not guilty to the charge when it was read to him. It was in view of his plea the prosecution counsel had asked the court for a trial date and prayed that the defendant be remanded in prison custody.
Counsel to the defendant, Kanu Agabi, SAN, told the court that he had served a bail application on behalf of this client on the prosecution, and pleaded with the court to remand his client in the EFCC custody.
Consequently, Justice Olatoregun adjourned the case to October 24, 2018 for hearing of the bail application and ordered the defendant to be remanded in EFCC custody pending hearing of the bail application.
However, Justice Olatoregun has said Fayose should be remanded in prison custody pending the fulfillment of his bail condition.
Leave A Response