Saraki Arrives Code of Conduct Tribunal, Live Coverage Barred
Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, has appeared before the Code of Conduct tribunal.
The Senate President is accompanied by his Deputy, Ike Ekweremadu and other Senators, as well as former Governor of Sokoto State, Aliyu Wamakko.
The Tribunal has, however, barred all media outfits from broadcasting the proceedings and security has been tightened at the venue of the trial.
The FCT Police Commissioner, Mr Wilson Inalegwu, is in charge of security at the tribunal.
An argument ensued as to where the accused will be seated, as the prosecutor, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), argues that the “business of the day is for the accused person to take his plea”, insisting that “the Senate President must be seated at the dock”.
The Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, had on Monday said he would appear before the Code of Conduct Tribunal on Tuesday, September 22′.
A statement posted on his Facebook account said, “While the Senate President Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, had stated and maintained that he is ready to submit himself to due process of the law on any issue concerning him, he also believes that he has an inalienable right to resort to the same judiciary for protection when he feels his fundamental rights are about to be infringed upon.
“The Senate President is a law abiding citizen and his absence from tribunal was based on legal advice he received from his counsel that it is not necessary for him to appear before the tribunal at this stage since the jurisdiction of the tribunal and the process of initiating the matter are being challenged before the Federal High Court, Abuja.
“Following the adjournment for the determination of the motion on notice and the substantive suit before the Federal High Court to 30th of September and the appeal pending before the Court of Appeal adjourned to the 29th of September 2015, the Senate President has decided, as a law abiding citizen, to appear before the Tribunal in the interim.
“Dr. Saraki has taken the decision to attend the Tribunal sitting to demonstrate his respect for the rule of law in spite of his personal reservation on the process of his trial and the purpose it may be intended to serve.
“Dr. Saraki wishes to assure Nigerians of his absolute belief in the judicial process and is therefore confident that the course of justice would be served at the end of this matter.”
Senators Vow To Defend Institution
About 50 Senators on Sunday met at a private office in Abuja to deliberate the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) trial of the Senate President.
The Senators, who insist they are in support of the anti-corruption war of the President, however accused the Presidency of instigating the CCB against the Senate President.
Senator Saraki was not part of the meeting, but after exhaustive deliberation, the Senators agreed to defend the Senate as an institution and its leadership.
Some of the Senators who attended the meeting include Senator Samuel Anyawu – PDP Imo East, Senator Dino Melaye – APC Kogi West, Senator Binta Garba Masi – APC Adamawa North and Senator Hope Uzodinma – PDP Imo West.