Not less than 81 serving senators in the National Assembly yesterday accompanied the embattled Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki to the Code of Conduct Tribunal, CCT, for his trial over alleged false declaration of assets.
Senators from the Senate Unity Forum, SUF, including Barnabas Gemade, Ahmed Lawan, George Akume, and Marafa were however not part of the solidarity train that stormed the tribunal.
The senators drove in three coaster buses, led by Deputy Senate President, DSP, Ike Ekweremadu to the Code of Conduct Tribunal sitting in Jabi.
At yesterday’s proceedings, the chairman of CCT, Danladi Umar, asked the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, to “go and relax” as he adjourned his trial to November 5 and 6.
Saraki is facing a 13-count criminal charge bordering on false declaration of assets preferred against him by the Code of Conduct Bureau before the Code of Conduct Tribunal.
The adjournment followed the pending judgment of the Appeal Court on the trial of Saraki.
While Saraki’s lawyer, Mahmud Magaji, SAN, prayed that the trial be adjourned sine die, the prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Jacobs, argued the tribunal to adjourn the trial out of respect for the Appeal Court, which reserved judgment on the suit filed by the Senate President to stop his trial for alleged false declaration of assets.
CCT chairman, Danladi Umar, objected the prayer of Saraki’s counsel, Magaji, SAN, and adjourned to November 5 and 6, 2015 for counsels in the matter to report back to the court on the decision of the Appeal Court and hearing.
Meanwhile, the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, yesterday, failed to persuade the Code of Conduct Tribunal to grant an indefinite adjournment on the 13-count criminal charge pending against him.
The Justice Danladi Umar-led tribunal, while rejecting the application which Saraki made through his lawyer, Mr. Mahmud Magaji, SAN, ordered him to appear before it on November 5.
Justice Umar said the tribunal was minded to adjourn full-blown hearing on the substantive case till next month, to enable it to ascertain the outcome of the appeal that Saraki lodged before the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal.
Saraki, who stormed the court yesterday with 81 senators and 50 lawyers, initially declined to mount the dock, placing reliance on the fact that a higher court is already seized with the ‘Res’ of the case against him.
He was eventually compelled to enter the dock by the tribunal at exactly 10:59am, even as the prosecuting counsel, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs, SAN, urged the court to as a mark of respect for judicial hierarchy, defer further proceeding on the matter for two weeks.