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Emefiele: EFCC to appeal N100m fine

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) says it would appeal the N100 million fine imposed on it by a Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court for detaining Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) former Governor Godwin Emefiele.

The anti-graft agency said the judge failed to take into cognizance the fact that it had a valid court order for Emefiele’s detention.

Justice Olukayode Adeniyi while ruling on a fundamental rights enforcement suit by a former CBN boss, held that no law allows any government agency to detain a Nigerian beyond the period permitted by Section 35 (4) and (5) of the 1999 Constitution.

Justice Adeniyi went on to slam the N100 million fine against the anti-corruption agency for keeping Emefiele behind bars for almost five months as against a maximum of 48 hours allowed by law.

But the EFCC, in a statement by its Head of Media and Publicity, Dele Oyewale, said it was dissatisfied with the ruling.

Oyewale said: ” The EFCC has expressed dissatisfaction with a judgment of the FCT High Court awarding N100 million damages against it in favour of a former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Godwin Emefiele.

“Justice O.A Adeniyi, on Monday, January 8, 2024, find the Commission after he ruled that the commission’s detention of Emefiele in the course of his investigation was a violation of his right to liberty.

Justice Adeniyi had held that the respondents, the EFCC and its chairman as well as   the Attorney- General of the Federation (AGF) violated Emefiele’s right to personal liberty as guaranteed by Section 35(1) of the Constitution.

The judge also noted that by the evidence before him, Emefiele was detained within the jurisdiction of his court from June 13 to November 8, 2023.

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