False Asset Declaration Charge: Why we cleared Saraki – Code of Conduct Tribunal

FROM LEFT: Senate President, Bukola Saraki; Sen. Dino Melaye (Kogi, APC), Sen. Danjuma Goje (Gombe, APC) and others after the Code of Conduct Tribunal sitting in Abuja discharged and acquitted the  Senate President of 18-count charge of non-declaration of assets, in Abuja on Wednesday (14/6/17).
03224/14/6/2017/Ernest Okorie/BJO/NAN
FROM LEFT: Senate President, Bukola Saraki; Sen. Dino Melaye (Kogi, APC), Sen. Danjuma Goje (Gombe, APC) and others after the Code of Conduct Tribunal sitting in Abuja discharged and acquitted the Senate President of 18-count charge of non-declaration of assets, in Abuja on Wednesday (14/6/17). 03224/14/6/2017/Ernest Okorie/BJO/NAN

The Code of Conduct Tribunal on Wednesday cleared the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, of false asset declaration charges, brought against him in September 2015.

Mr. Saraki was slammed with a 13-count charge by the federal government, shortly after his emergence as Senate president.

He made several attempts to prevent the trial without initial success.

In his application for a no-case submission, Mr. Saraki’s lawyers argued that the allegations made against their client was based on petitions from complainants who never appeared as witnesses to testify.

The lawyers, led by a former Attorney General of the Federation, Kanu Agabi, argued that the petitions upon which the allegations were based, did not form part of the documents presented in court.

They prayed the tribunal to dismiss the case, on the grounds that the prosecution failed to link Mr. Saraki with the charges.

In his ruling on the application, the CCT said the failure of the prosecution to present witnesses who were fully part of the alleged offence against the senate president, made their evidence “incurably defective”.

An official of the Code of Conduct Bureau, Samuel Madujemu, had appeared in the tribunal to testify regarding the bureau’s findings which resulted in the alleged offences.

Mr. Madujemu had stated that the evidences he presented in the tribunal were based on information provided by the bureau’s investigation team.

Another member of the tribunal’s bench, William Atedze, said it was unlawful to depend on the word “team”, for the presentation of an evidence, since the law does not recognize “team” as a source of evidence.

He said the evidence alluded to in any court of law should only be given by “a witness who saw, heard or took part in the transaction, upon which he is testifying to”.

“The evidence is incurably defective. The prosecution has failed to link the defendant with the alleged offence,” Mr. Atedze said.

Speaking after the ruling, a prosecution counsel, Pious Kehinde, said steps were already on to get copies of the ruling. He said the prosecution will study the ruling and determine the next course of action.


DOWNLOAD THE PREMIUM TIMES MOBILE APP

Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application

TEXT AD:WARNING TO MEN: These 3 Foods is Killing Your Erection. Click Here to Know Them...


All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.


  • marig

    Saw this coming. The prosecution had to amend charges numerous times whenever the charges were blown away by the defense. The defendant had better representation, period.

    • DONALDSON

      absolutely correct, secondly saraki was smarter than them for going to higher a lawyer that the CCB chairman once work in his chambers in calabar who also facilitate his appointment to the federal ministry of justice when he was the attorney general of the federation

      • DONALDSON

        Barrister, Kanu Agabi. SAN

  • Africa

    They can as well abolish the CCB… it doesn’t serve any useful purpose. Nigeria is a failed country.

  • Adekunle Akindude

    This tribunal was bought and they delivered as promised and predicted What a shame

    • DONALDSON

      im happy you have inadvertently confirmed that
      the APC government and it prosecutorial team, lead by the Attorney general of the federation was bought in this matter. because a fiat to prosecute a case in a tribunal is under the federal ministry of justice and must be given effect by the attorney General and minister of justice. it is not like a concurrent court of law. were the chife judge of the federation or the president of the court of appeal have some part to play. how can you charge someone with 13 count charge and all the evidence is extracted from either newsprint media or from internet. withouth a physically and irrefutable evidence and you want shuch case to hold water at the end of the day. which high profile case has the APC successfully prosecuted since they came to power mention one. hope you are not trying to blame saraki that he bought his way out of this case.

  • iwe paul

    I always knew it would end this way,there was never any credible evidence against Saraki,it was all a political witch hunt from the word go. How this trial suddenly started after he became the Senate President made me know nothing will come out of it,it was never an anti-corruption issue/trial. It was a fight between 2 political gladiators,who were equally matched. When i heard and saw that the EFCC was testifying against SARAKI in a case that was supposed to be about false asset declaration(totally within the purview of the CCB),i knew this case was going nowhere,bcs the people behind the prosecution are not honest themselves.

    • Sanssouci

      “the people behind the prosecution are not honest themselves.”
      I think you’ve said it all there…

  • Fadama

    May I use this opportunity to call on all those on corruption trial by this useless government to be acquitted as soon as possible. The two years I have spent defending this useless government and their dramatic fight against corruption is a completely wasted effort.

  • Dazmillion

    The uprising so badly needed in this country is approaching

    • Imole

      I totally agree with you my brother. None of the institutions as presently operated can salvage the common man’s yearning for justice. People will sooner than later take to the street to right the wrongs…

  • K-kay

    If the findings of CCB can’t serve as proof of evidence then the bureau serves no purpose. This is SAD!

  • Apostel

    Nigerians are the stupidest people on earth, they would take even stupidity as food, if there were such on the market.

  • Adele Uhuru

    The current administration is but a fraud pertuated on uneducated unintelligent Nigerian mostly of the Northern and South Western extraction

  • SAM .A

    Another sad day in the history of dispensation of justice . They got the evidence and witnesses in the case of poor man who stole goat at Abeokuta , he was given 10 years in jail pronto. Now when it is the elites involved and one of their is in trouble . They will always find away to clear him . A tale of two cities , one for poor , another for the rich . In peoples court Saraki cannot account for the stupendous wealth he has been parading . God’s judgement will come sooner than these Nigerian recycled elites expect.

  • Enemona

    “False Asset Declaration Charge: Why we cleared Saraki”. Beacuse the President is away and we think he would not be coming back. Locusts have taken over. Buhari should have never allowed these guys near government house.

    • Frank Bassey

      Did you read and UNDERSTAND the report? Na whao!

      • Enemona

        No, I didn’t read it. Thanks for the great observation.

    • Shehu Monguno

      Is Mr. President super human? or will he sit in judgement as the judge? the prosecution as usual bungled. Case closed

  • Sanssouci

    Kanu Agabi SAN
    Oronsaye now Saraki

    2/2

  • Frank Bassey

    With these reasons, it is obvious to even a layman that the suit was based on hearsay. This is very funny indeed. Saraki’s offence was that he outwitted the so-called political godfathers to emerge Senate President in a landmark coup executed with the better-organized PDP lawmakers against the empty political giants.

  • The Rt. or Lft. Hon NinjaK

    …….even the President is now defective……

  • Curtx Maccido

    DISASTER!!!…i have never lost hope about the project Nigeria until today, disgraceful and unbelievable. Shouldn’t we just open the prisons and set all inmates free? Big time rogues are bragging and even control the machinery of government – I sense a consuming revolution soon

  • Emeka

    Ok, I have given up, corrupt has finally won!! APC is dead and really not the party to take this country out of bondage. Saraki!! Just go on and rejoice, your men and women of questionable character have assisted you to wriggle out of your crimes. Corruption is deep seated in the upper chambers and beyond, now I know!!

    • Aduke

      You are just selective in your thought. You feel that because Saraki was discharged and acquitted, corruption has won. Tinubu who is now a political godfather in the southwest Nigeria faced similar charges some years ago,and the same Danladi Umar through the help of Osibanjo,now vice President, cleared Tinubu. Is Tinubu holy,and Saraki corrupt? Both men are corrupt. But what’s good for the goose is also good for the gander. Saraki is entitled to a judgement that Tinubu got earlier. Nigerians have a short memory. All the trial at the tribunal is a political stunt for the discerning minds.

  • Wale

    Didn’t CCB investigated this thing and found it credible for prosecution in the first place?
    It’s not working folks, it ain’t working.
    might as well close the shop and go home.

  • atakamosu

    The prosecution was unprepared, so what did we expect? Of courseSaraki has been acquitted, not on evidence but lack thereof. The average Nigerian lawyer may be booksmart, but scared of the appellation’s Q.C or S.A.N. to be fair Saraki won on legal grounds. Even a similar case in 2007 FGN v. Tinubu determined by Umar dismissed the charges for prosecutorial inadequacies. How can Umar now rule the opposite way? CCB should cross their t’s and dot their i’s before launching politically motivated attacks. There was no case once the prosecutor’s failed to follow due diligence. Read the law related to the CCT and trials of suspects.

  • Gidi

    This is the most ridiculous judgement i have ever seen. Again, Saraki got away on technicality due to poor prosecution. Nigeria is officially finished. There is no sane investor that should consider Nigeria a decent place to do business.

    The bandits have taken over country’s institutions. If you can afford a high paid lawyer, and extra $$$ for the judge, justice is guaranteed irrespective of solid evidence

    • Shehu Monguno

      If the prosecution is poor how then is the judgement ridiculous?

  • 360°?????????

    @disqus_1P4NU5rbm0:disqus

    IS IT NOW CLEAR THAT MUHAMADU BUHARI IS NOT FIGHTING ANY CORRUPTION,
    BUT INSTEAD AIDING AND ABETTING CORRUPTION BY JUST PRETENDING TO BE
    DOING OTHERWISE AND ACTUALLY BEING A CORRUPT GOVERNMENT ITSELF?

    • Eze the First

      “Nigeria is no longer a country. It’s not a country where people can live to survive. Nigeria is a place

      ruled by criminals and thieves, as well as by several others – who believe in plundering and looting.”

      ……Mbazulike Amaechi

      (Nigeria’s First Minister of Aviation)

      [September 14th, 2014]

      • Shorty & Sharpy

        @disqus_1P4NU5rbm0:disqus

        STEALING DOES NOT NEED AN ANALYSIS BEFORE IT CAN BE UNDERSTOOD AS HEINOUS.

        THERE’s NO INTELLECTUAL WAY TO SOLVE TREASURY THEFT OTHER THAN by VIOLENCE

        ONLY A BLOODY REVOLUTION CAN SAVE NIGERIA – ANYTHING BESIDES IS WASTE OF TIME.

    • Wale

      No doubt.

  • Prayin’ Mantis

    @disqus_dFOAiJMW7b:disqus,

    There’s no drop of Holy Spirit in Judge Danladi Umar

    Mr. Danladi Umar;
    the puisne judge of the Code of Conduct Tribunal has no drop of Holy
    Spirit in his bereft heart or soul. He was working to a self-given answer
    from outset. He took three [3] whole months to write a ruling on a simple
    application for recusal. In all judiciary all around the world a motion for
    recusal is often easily disposed of in one sentence or in one-paragraph
    (as bench ruling) possibly on the same day it is filed.

    In fact a recusal ruling is often issued in chambers and merely served on the
    counsel without need for any time-wasting hearing in the open court. But our
    subdued and fretful Mr. Danladi Umar adjourned the case of Bukola Saraki for
    three months, just to write a ruling on a simple motion for recusal.

    Last October when he eventually scribbled a meaningless and longish
    order as his ruling – when just one sentence could do – he adjourned the
    Bukola Saraki case again for three weeks. Next, he listed the case for first
    week November, heard the testimony of just one witness; then immediately
    adjourned again for another two months. Obviously, there’s no longer any
    sense or judicial drive in Danladi Umar who should be repealed and replaced.

  • otunga

    Michael Wetkas or whatever… What kinda f*cking name is that?

  • Mentus

    The CCB could not produce any valid evidence because of lack of trying. If Saraki had come from the wrong side of ‘the great divide’ they would have have worked hard to obtain credible evidence. After all the EFCC have managed to find enough reason to try and impoverish Patience Jonathan by stripping her of her assets. It is all contrived.

  • bulus

    Muhammadu, you unfortunately have been completely demystified and disgraced by guys who could be your kids..its gotten so bad that you’ve become a footmat for all kinds of crooks including even hungry journalists…long story short….you are a disgrace and a disappointment…General, get well and retire back to Daura peacefully, the embarrassments have reach the limits, you try 2019 and it’ll be back to your losing streak. Trust me.

    • dudu

      Well said Bulus, it is the naked truth. I officially gave up on the Buhari administration after the CCT judgement. Neither me nor members of my family are voting any political party in potential elections. I regret campaigning for PMB. It’s an understatement that he is a huge let down.

  • thusspokez

    The three conspirators: Kanu Agabi, Danladi Umar, and Rotimi Jacobs

    Why is any Nigerian surprised by the result? CCT Chairman Danladi Umar is a mediocre judge and like the so-called lead prosecuting counsel Mr. Rotimi Jacobs, both were compromised half way in the proceedings.

    Kanu Agabi’s CV would indicate that he is not a proper lawyer but one who uses bribes to win cases on behalf of his clients — and that was why the crook Saraki hired him.

    The delays and postponements of the court proceedings provided cover for Kanut Agabi, Danladi Umar, and Mr. Rotimi Jacobs to secretly cut deals.

    Indeed following Kanut Agabi joining the crook Saraki;s team, suddenly you don’t know which side Rotimi Jacobsw is working for. Chairman Umar too, suddenly became mellow — even offering to personally serve a glass of water to the crooked Saraki. These three crooked amigos (Kanu Agabi, Danladi Umar, and Rotimi Jacobs) are treating Nigerians as fóóls.

    • Justice Equity

      Wailing wailer,go form your own court and convict him .hypocrites.

  • Justice Equity

    Yet another technical knock out to the integrity deficit buhari government, a government conceived in hate and driven by malicious, vindictive hate spirit.
    Another victory for the rule of law.
    May God never allow this kind of leaders on Nigeria forever.

  • Adoke

    You are just selective in your thought. You feel that because Saraki was discharged and acquitted, corruption has won. Tinubu who is now a political godfather in the southwest Nigeria faced similar charges some years ago,and the same Danladi Umar through the help of Osibanjo,now vice President, cleared Tinubu. Is Tinubu holy,and Saraki corrupt? Both men are corrupt. But what’s good for the goose is also good for the gander. Saraki is entitled to a judgement that Tinubu got earlier. Nigerians have a short memory. All the trial at the tribunal is a political stunt for the discerning minds.

  • Yego V

    And now my conclusion: To convict a corrupt Nigerian; a demon will have to be the “Prosecutor and Lucifer himself the “Judge”.
    Lord have mercy