Court Orders Emefiele’s Release, Declares Detention Null and Void
A Federal Capital Territory High Court in Abuja has ruled in favor of the release of Godwin Emefiele, the suspended Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). Furthermore, another court has deemed his arrest and subsequent detention by the Department of State Services (DSS) as null and void.
Emefiele had sought the intervention of the court in a case involving the Incorporated Trustees of the Forum for Accountability and Good Leadership, the Attorney General of the Federation, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Inspector General of Police, the State Security Service, and the Central Bank of Nigeria.
The presiding judge of the court ruled that Emefiele’s arrest and detention were in direct violation of a previous ruling made by Justice M. A. Hassan.
During the proceedings, Emefiele’s counsel, Peter Abang, pleaded with the court to invalidate his client’s arrest and detention, highlighting that it blatantly disregarded Justice M. A. Hassan’s ruling, which was delivered on December 29, 2022.
In delivering the judgment, Justice Bello Kawu concurred with the argument presented by the defense, stating that the arrest and detention of Emefiele indeed violated the standing order of Justice Hassan.
In addition to nullifying any arrest warrant obtained by the DSS, the court ordered the immediate release of Emefiele from custody.
Following the court’s ruling, Emefiele’s counsel commended the Nigerian judges for their courage and called upon the DSS to promptly comply with the court order. He further emphasized that Emefiele’s health had significantly deteriorated during his one-month detention and stressed the importance of allowing him to seek necessary medical attention.
This latest development brings relief to Emefiele, who had been held in custody against the provisions of the law. The court’s decision serves as a reminder of the importance of upholding the rule of law and respecting judicial orders in Nigeria’s legal system.