Abdulrasheed Maina, the former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reform Task Team, has been released from the Kuje prison in Abuja.
Confirming Maina’s release, a lawyer in his defence team, Ademola Adedipe, said the former pension boss had been in detention since November 2019 following his arraignment before Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court in Abuja.
Adedipe told NAN that: “He (Maina) was released at about 6pm on Monday. We are happy that he had been released. He can now attend to his health and have unfettered access to his defence team in preparation for his defence in court.
Recall that the judge, about a month ago, accepted Borno South Senator, Ali Ndume, as surety for the bail earlier granted the defendant.
He disclosed that the delay in securing the release of the ex-pension boss despite the judge accepting Ndume was due to administrative issues.
“Yes, he was released based on Senator Ndume’s suretyship,” the lawyer confirmed.
Adedipe expressed delight over his client’s release, saying it would not only afford him the opportunity to get adequate medical attention but also enable him to prepare for trial.
“We can only thank God and this is good for us because we will now have time to prepare for his defence; we will now have good conferencing on the matter,” he said.
“We will have a better perspective of what the case is all about. And this will also allow him to treat himself you know he has been very ill in order to stand the trial.”
Naija News recalls that Justice Okon Abang had varied Maina’s bail conditions, following his inability to meet the terms granted to him on November 26, 2019.
Abang reduced Maina’s bail condition from N1 billion to N500 million with a surety in the like sum who must be a serving senator as opposed to the earlier order of producing two serving senators.
Maina was charged with 12 counts bordering on money laundering by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).