Saraki’s Lawyers Withdraw From CCT Trial
All lawyers representing the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, on charges leveled against him by the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) have withdrawn from the case.
Their withdrawal follows the ruling of the Code of Conduct Tribunal to continue trial, a decision which the lawyers describe as “judicial rascality”.
The Tribunal had based its ruling on the strength of Section 305 of the administration of Criminal Justice Act which says that a trial can be concluded and ruling reserved until all questions about the trial are answered.
Dr. Saraki then asked for a month to reconstitute his defence but lawyer to the federal government kicked against it saying that it was another way for the Senate President to “get what he wants”.
The tribunal, however, ruled that it would give the Senate President one week to reconstitute his legal team.
The Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) has adjourned till November 19.
Earlier, counsel to the government , Mr Rotimi Jacobs, had notified the tribunal that the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal had in a judgment it delivered on October 30, dismissed Dr. Saraki’s appeal against his trial.
However, the Senate President through his lawyer, Mr. Mahmud Magaji (SAN), urged the tribunal to adjourn the trial and await the decision of the appeal he has lodged before the Supreme Court.
The Senate President had appealed the judgment of the Court of Appeal, which on October 30 affirmed the jurisdiction of the CCT to try him on 13 counts of false assets declaration.
Senator Saraki also filed an application for stay of proceedings urging the Supreme Court to halt the proceedings of the Code of Conduct Tribunal to try him for the alleged offences pending when his appeal would be determined.
The Senate President raised seven grounds of appeal in his notice of appeal filed on Tuesday and attached to the application for stay of proceedings.
Dr Saraki urged the Supreme Court to set aside the judgment of the Court of Appeal, the entire proceedings of the CCT and the charges preferred against him before the Tribunal.
Mr. Saraki was arraigned September 18, but pleaded not guilty to the charges and was granted bail.