As the trial of the Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, continues at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), the Chairman of the CCT has entertained the hearing of the motion to recuse himself filed by one of Saraki’s Counsel’s, Ajibola Oluyede.
Recall that at the Thursday, April 21st sitting of the tribunal, Justice Umar had lost his temper at Oluyede and repeatedly yelled at the Counsel to the Senate President to “Sit Down!” when the counsel attempted to bring up the motion relating to his bribery charges.
Oluyede, discussing the motion in court, cited reasons why Justice Umar should recuse himself, citing that Dan Ladi Umar’s relationship with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), as a suspect in a N10million bribery investigation, made him morally unjustified to sit on the case – because the EFCC was one of the investigating authorities in the case. Oluyede, also brought up Dan Ladi’s application for bail from the EFCC, where he stated that he would make himself available at anytime that the EFCC required him.
Many will also recall that the charges against the Senate President were filed in the days following the Senate’s investigation of the EFCC for diverting recovered public funds. In an investigation report by the EFCC dated 24th June 2014, the CCT boss and his erstwhile Personal Assistant, Gambo Abdullahi, are listed as suspects.
Paragraph 2 of the report, states that “Justice Umar made direct demand for the sum of N10 million to quash the charges against [the complainant], sometime in 2012. He disclosed that he was compelled to pay the sum of N1.8milion after persistent inundation with phone calls from Justice Umar.”
Oluyede also cited paragraph 4 of the report, that stated that “Available circumstantial evidence suggest that the Tribunal Chairman might have indeed demanded and collected money from the complainant through his Personal Assistant”