Court remands former FIIRO DG in correctional facility
A Lagos Special Offences Court sitting in Ikeja has ordered that a former Director-General of the Federal Institute of Industrial Research (FIIRO), Chima Cartney Igwe, be remanded in the facility of Nigeria Correctional Services’ (NCS) for allegedly giving false information.
The trial judge, Justice Sherifat Solebo, ordered his remand following his arraignment by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences (ICPC) on a three-count charge pending the perfection of his bail.
Igwe pleaded not guilty to the offence bordering on giving false information with the intent to deceive, using office to confer an unfair advantage upon himself and making a false statement to a public officer.
ICPC in the charge marked ID/15716C/2021, stated that Igwe sometimes in December 2002, while serving as a public officer, knowingly gave a document with false information to his employer.
His offences, the agency said, are contrary to and punishable under section 17(1)(c) and 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.
It also stated that his offence of making false statement to a public officer is contrary to section 25(1)(a) and punishable under 25(1)(b) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act 2020.
Earlier in the proceeding, the prosecution counsel, Mr. Henry Emore, informed the court that the prosecution filed the charges on July 15, 2021, against the defendant (Igwe), praying the court to take the plea of the defendant.
The prosecution alleged that the defendant is an officer with FIIRO did confer an unfair advantage upon himself by presenting an Attestation Letter to the Institute signifying the completion of a PhD programme in Applied Chemistry at the University of Abomey-Calavi (UAC), Republic of Benin, consequent upon which he got many promotions and rose through the ranks to the Directorate cadre.
He said that they had three witnesses to testify in the trial, urging the court to remand the defendant.
Igwe pleaded not guilty to all the count’s charge.
However, his counsel prayed the court to grant him bail in most liberal terms.
While moving his bail application, defendant counsel, Mr E.O. Ekong told the court that his client had a bail application dated September 27, 2021, praying the court to admit the defendant to bail pending his trial.
Justice Sholebo, in a bench ruling, granted the accused bail in the sum of N500,000 with two sureties in like sum.
According to the judge, upon the motion on notice before the court by the defendant’s counsel, bail is hereby granted to the defendant in the sum of N500, 000 with two sureties in like sum. The judge ordered that the Registrar must verify the address of the sureties.
“The surety must show evidence of tax payment to Lagos State government verifiable by the court registrar,” she ordered.
She subsequently adjourned the trial to February 24, 27, 2022.