Senate to investigate Saraki, Melaye over ‘fake Customs paper, certificate’

Senate President Bukola Saraki
Senate President Bukola Saraki

The Senate has referred its president, Bukola Saraki, and controversial Senator, Dino Melaye, to the committee on ethics and privileges over allegations of importing a car with fake Customs documents and certificate forgery respectively.

The resolution, on Tuesday, followed a motion by the former Senate Leader, Ali Ndume, who said the two cases – alleged seizure of car belonging to Mr. Saraki and Mr. Melaye’s certificate scandal – had made the Senate subject of public ridicule.

Mr. Ndume categorically said Nigerians were insulting the Senate over the scandals and, therefore, urged the Senate to investigate Messrs. Saraki and Melaye.

Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided in the absence of Mr. Saraki who went to the Code of Conduct Tribunal for his corruption trial, referred the matters to the committee on ethics and privileges chaired by Samuel Anyanwu.

The committee has four weeks to report back to the Senate, Mr. Ekweremadu ruled.

The two matters involving Mr. Saraki and his ally, Mr. Melaye, were made public following reports by Sahara Reporters about how a bullet proof Range Rover purportedly belonging to Mr. Saraki was imported with fake papers and seized by the Nigeria Customs Service.

The Comptroller-General of the NCS, Hameed Ali, is currently at loggerheads with the Senate which insists the retired colonel must wear Customs uniform to appear before the lawmakers on Wednesday.

Sahara Reporters’ report suggested the Senate was tough on Mr. Ali because Customs seized Mr. Saraki’s car.

But seizure is yet to be confirmed by the NCS.

The paper also said Mr. Melaye did not graduate from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, contrary to the Senator’s claim. But Mr. Melaye denied the allegation, saying he is even currently studying for a postgraduate degree in the school.

Since his removal as Senate Leader after a fallout with Mr. Saraki over the rejection of the nomination of Ibrahim Magu for the top job at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr. Ndume has been openly tackling Mr. Saraki.

He once asked the Senate President to disclose the details of the National Assembly’s budget to both the public and the lawmakers.

Nigerians following the Senate proceedings online dismissed the probe of Mr. Saraki and Mr. Melaye.

“The outcome is already known…clean bill of health,” said Achilleus Uchegbu on Facebook.

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