CCT dismisses Saraki’s motion for disqualification of chairman from trial
The Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), Danladi Umar on Thursday dismissed the motion filed by the Senate President Bukola Saraki seeking Umar’s disqualification from his trial.
Saraki is facing charges of false declaration of assets at the tribunal.
Saraki said that the chairman lacked moral justification to try him since he (Umar) was being investigated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission over a N10 million bribery allegation and that the chairman was biased against him.
In his ruling in the application, Umar held that the application lacked merit.
“The application lacks merit and is hereby dismissed in its entirety,” the judge ruled. Umar said that he was not being investigated by any anti-graft agency.
He said that the bribery allegation raised by the defendant was settled via a letter by EFCC, which investigated the matter since March 5, 2015.
Umar said that even the petitioner had failed to provide the telephone conservation between him (chairman), and one Gambo.
“It is trite in law that he who alleges must prove; in this case, the petitioner could not prove his allegation,” he said.
He noted that there were bodies established by law to investigate allegations such as the EFCC, ICPC, DSS and the Police.
“In this instance, the EFCC has concluded its investigation against Justice Umar; after the investigation, it found that the bribery allegation was mere suspicion.”
The judge stated that the EFCC had written to the Attorney General of the Federation and confirmed that after concluding the investigation, it found no substantial evidence to prosecute Umar.
The Chairman also dismissed another application made by Saraki’s lawyer, Mr Paul Usoroh (SAN), questioning the legality of the prosecution to amend the charges earlier brought against his client (Saraki).
The prosecution lawyer, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), in his reaction to Usoroh’s application, had argued that there was no law that made it mandatory for the prosecution to seek leave of court before amending its charge
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