The former Governor of Eastern Province, Emmanuel Gasana has told court that while he personally benefited from services of a contractor, there is no evidence to indicate that this was illegal. He was appearing before Nyagatare Primary Court in Nyagatare district where he was charged with two counts of soliciting and accepting illegal benefits in exchange for favors and abuse of office. Besides formerly heading the Eastern Province, Gasana is also a former Inspector General of Rwanda National Police (RNP). Appearing before court, Gasana was pinned by prosecutors for having coerced a businessman who was contracted to drill water for irrigation in different parts of the province, to include his farm, works that cost Rwf48m. Gasana's farm is located in Katabagemu Sector in Nyagatare and it consists of a macadamia plantation, according to prosecution. The supply of an irrigation facility in Gasana's plantation was according to prosecutors, a bribe for him to lobby for the contractor to expand his services in different districts. ALSO READ: Governor-gasana-to-appear-in-court-on-friday The businessman, who is identified as Eric Karinganire, is said to have met with Gasana in mid-2022. At that time, his company was operating in Rwamagana, installing irrigation in people’s farms on a commercial basis in Gahengeri and Karenge sectors. The prosecutors argued that after the meeting, the businessman was allowed to extend his services to Nyagatare and Gatsibo, but there was something suspicious about how all this happened. ALSO READ: Eastern-province-governor-gasana-arrested During that time, the company is said to have lacked some infrastructure like an electricity line, and tools for doing good work in the areas where it operated. The prosecutors referred to some WhatsApp conversations between Gasana and the contractor but also noted that they had affidavits from some mayors from the province who are pinning him. In his defence, Gasana said he received free services from the investor because his farm was close to an electricity line and a water source from where water would be easily pumped to the neighbouring residents who faced water shortages. Later, he added, the contractor was arrested for not delivering the services he promised to people in two sectors of Ngoma district. Gasana’s lawyers argued that the prosecutors have no evidence to show that Gasana solicited and received a bribe. ALSO READ: Suspended-governor-gasana-faces-two-charges In addition, the lawyers also argued against the claim that two parties met at Epic Hotel, saying that this does not constitute a crime. After hearing from both sides, the judge adjourned the hearing saying that the bail ruling will be delivered next week on November 15. The ruling will determine whether the former police boss will be released on bail or remanded for 30 days as requested by prosecution. Gasana served as the Eastern Province Governor for two and a half years, having been appointed by President Paul Kagame on March 15, 2021. Before that, he held the position of Governor of the Southern Province. He also served as Inspector General of Rwanda National Police between 2009 and 2018. Before joining RNP, he was a Brigadier General in the Rwanda Defence Force (RDF) and previously acted as the Chief of Logistics for the army.