The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Thursday, August 8, 2019, arraigned a former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Prof. Maurice Iwu, before Justice Chuka Obiozor of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos on a four-count charge bordering on money laundering to the tune of N1, 203,000,000 (One Billion, Two Hundred and Three Million Naira).
The former INEC Boss Iwu, between December 2014 and March 2015,allegedly aided the concealment of the sum of N1, 203, 00,000.00(One Billion, Two Hundred and Three Million Naira) in Bioresources Institute of Nigeria (BION) Limited’s account number 1018603119 domiciled in the United Bank for Africa( UBA) Plc.
He pleaded not guilty to the charge preferred against him.
In view of his plea, the prosecution counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, asked the court for a trial date and also prayed that the defendant be remanded in prison custody.
The defence counsel, Ahmed Raji, SAN, however, informed the court of a bail application as well as another one challenging the territorial jurisdiction filed on behalf of the defendant.
Iwu’s lawyer, therefore, prayed the court to hear the bail application in view of the age and pedigree of the defendant.
In his ruling, Justice Obiozor held that the issue of bail could not be addressed, since the defence was challenging the court’s jurisdiction to hear the case.
The defence counsel, thereafter, withdrew the application challenging the territorial jurisdiction.
Consequently, the application was struck out by the court.
Counsel to the defendant also prayed that his client be remanded in the EFCC custody pending the hearing of the bail application.
The prosecution counsel informed the court that he received the bail application in court today and would need some time to respond.
After listening to both parties, Justice Obiozor adjourned the matter to August 9, 2019 for hearing of the bail application and ordered the defendant to be remanded in the EFCC custody.