THE Honourable Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on Monday ordered the remand of Senator Ali Ndume in Kuje Prison over his inability to produce the former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reformed Task Team, Abdulrasheed Maina, who jumped bail in his ongoing trial over the mismanagement of over N2 billion pension funds.
Senator Ndume (APC), who represents Borno South Senatorial District at the upper legislature, stood as surety for Maina who allegedly absconded in May 2020.
Senator Ndume would only be released from prison when he produces Maina in court or sells off the N500 million worth of property located in Asokoro, Abuja, which was used as guarantee for the bail bond, and tenders the evidence of the payment of the proceeds of the sale into the Federation Account.
Justice Abang said Senator Ndume failed to file a formal application to show cause why he should not forfeit the bail bond of N500 million deposed on May 5 as part of the conditions for standing surety for Mr Maina.
Counsel to EFCC, Mohammed Abubakar, had on November 18, 2020 asked the court to make an order for the lawmaker to forfeit the bail bond since the defendant had jumped bail. Abubakar also asked the court to revoke Maina’s bail and issue a warrant of arrest on him.
Although the court had granted the applications of the EFCC on Senatoe Maina, it gave however gave Senator Ndume an opportunity to appear with his legal representative and adjourned until Monday, November 23, 2020.
At the resumed sitting today (November 23, 2020), Hon. Justice Abang ordered that Senator Ndume be remanded in Kuje prison pending when he meets the conditions for release. The judge also issued a warrant of arrest against Maina due to his continued absence from trial in the fraud charges brought against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The judge ordered security agencies to arrest Maina and bring him before the court to face the consequences of his jumping bail. Prior to the order for his arrest, Justice Abang revoked the N500 million bail he had granted on the ground that the bail had been abused following Maina’s refusal to appear in court. Justice Abang also granted EFCC’s application to continue Maina’s trial in his absence.