8 June 2011
* Case seen as test of govt's anti-corruption resolve
ABUJA, June 8 (Reuters) - Nigeria's former parliament speaker pleaded not guilty on Wednesday to 16 counts of fraud, the first charges in a case involving the alleged diversion of tens of millions of dollars.
Dimeji Bankole, one of the most powerful politicians in the last administration, appeared at a high court in the capital
and spoke only to enter his plea. He was remanded in custody pending a bail hearing on Friday. Abuja
The charges brought so far accuse Bankole of conspiring to inflate the cost of hundreds of television sets, computers, printers and photocopiers, and rigging the bid for two bullet-proof Range Rovers and three luxury Mercedes cars.