Cubana Chief Priest: Another Nigerian socialite charged for throwing money in the air

Francis Akhalbey April 18, 2024
Cubana Chief Priest is facing charges for allegedly abusing banknotes -- Photo: cubana_chiefpriest/Instagram

Authorities in Nigeria have brought charges against Cubana Chief Priest – a popular businessman and socialite – for allegedly throwing money in the air. The country’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) said the socialite, born Pascal Okechukwu, was on Wednesday arraigned on three counts of abusing banknotes.

Okechukwu entered a not-guilty plea, BBC reported. The EFCC has in recent times brought charges against local celebrities for allegedly abusing the West African nation’s banknotes. The anti-crime agency in its statement cited social events where Okechukwu allegedly “sprayed” money. Authorities said those incidents happened in the city of Lagos.

As previously reported by Face2Face Africa, “spraying” – which is a common practice in Nigeria – involves people throwing money in the air to show gratitude or honor someone. People are usually seen doing that at weddings, parties, and other social events in the West African nation.

But the notes landing on the ground after being thrown in the air is technically deemed an offense as people end up walking on them, BBC reported. And though individuals can be fined or sentenced to up to six months in jail if convicted of “spraying,” authorities hardly prosecute such cases. 

The judge on Wednesday granted Okechukwu bail of $8,600 after he was charged. Okechukwu after his court appearance took to Instagram to thank his followers for their support. “Seeing all your messages & love I’m so humbled,” he wrote.

Cubana Chief Priest owns a popular nightclub in Nigeria’s oil-rich Delta State and has around 5 million followers on Instagram, per BBC. His court arraignment comes after another popular Nigerian celebrity – Bobrisky – was sentenced to six months in jail for similarly abusing the country’s banknotes. 

“The act of mutilating the naira notes has become a menace, which has continued to damage the image of the country,” the judge said.

The EFCC on Tuesday said it has so far “secured 24 convictions across the country on the issue of Naira Abuse” while 200 others are facing prosecution. 

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: April 18, 2024


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