The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja II, paid a visit to the imprisoned former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, at Kuje Prison in Abuja.
Emefiele, facing a six-count charge of procurement fraud by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has been unable to fulfill his N300 million bail condition, leading to his incarceration.
During the visit, the influential monarch engaged in extensive discussions with Emefiele, making two appearances at the prison on the same day. The first meeting took place in the early afternoon, followed by a return visit four hours later.
The Ooni of Ife joins a growing list of prominent Nigerians advocating for the release of the former CBN chief.
Emefiele’s legal troubles stem from allegations of using his position to provide an illicit advantage to Sa’adatu Yaro, a CBN staff. The charges relate to the awarding of a contract for the procurement of 43 vehicles valued at N1.2 billion between 2018 and 2020.
Prior to the EFCC’s charges, Emefiele had spent over four months in the custody of the Department of State Security (DSS). Following his release by the DSS, he was rearrested by the EFCC.
Despite pleading not guilty to the charges, Emefiele was granted bail with a monetary requirement of N300 million, coupled with the provision of two sureties possessing certificates of occupancy and property titles within Abuja’s Maitama district.
The former CBN governor’s failure to meet these conditions has resulted in his continued confinement at the Kuje Correctional Facility until 2024.