A Federal Capital Territory High Court, Friday, remanded the former Chairman of the House of Representative’s Ad-hoc committee on Fuel Subsidy Payment, Farouk Lawan, and Secretary of the Committee, Boniface Emenalo, in prison.
Both men will remain in prison till February 8 when the court will rule on their bail application.
The judge, Mudashiru Oniyangi, reserved ruling on the bail application filed by Rickey Tafa, counsel to Messrs. Lawal and Emenalo. The judge reserved ruling based on the opposition raised by the prosecution counsel as well as the grounds that the application was filed on the first day of the hearing, February 1.
Messrs. Lawan and Emenalo were arraigned by the police on a seven-count charge of corruptly soliciting bribe of $3 million (N450 million) from an independent oil marketer, Femi Otedola. The Attorney General told the court that the two lawmakers actually collected about a quarter of the sum from the oil dealer. The bribe was to ensure that Mr. Otedola’s company – Zenon Oil and Gas – was removed from the list of indicted oil marketers in the infamous fuel subsidy scam.
Opposing the application for bail, prosecution counsel, Adegboyega Awomolo, said the accused persons will likely commit the offence again if they are granted bail especially because they are still members of committees in the House of Representatives.
The judge will decide on Friday, next week, whether the two lawmakers will be granted bail or whether they would spend more time in prison.
Meanwhile, the whereabouts of the $620, 000 (N93 million) actually collected as bribe by the lawmakers, according to the attorney general, is still unknown as both men could not provide them during police investigations.