Alleged Senate Rules Forgery: Saraki, Others’ Trial Stalled
The trial of the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki , his deputy, Senator Ike Ekwerenmadu and two others, has yet again been stalled.
This follows the Federal Government’s failure to commence trial on the two counts of forgery proffered against them.
At the resumed hearing before the Federal Capital Territory High Court in Jabi, counsel to the Federal Government, Aliyu Umar told Justice Yusuf Halilu that he was not prepared to proceed with the trial.
According to him, a motion dated September 26, questioning the jurisdiction of the court, had just been served on him and he would need time to adequately respond.
Mr Umar, who led the Federal Government’s Legal Team, informed the court that the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation did not hand him any other motion related to the case.
But Justice Halilu pointed out to him that similar motions had been pending since June 22.
The Federal Government’s counsel consequently applied for an adjournment to enable him put his house in order and also to better prepare his reaction to the motion filed by all the defendants.
Senator Saraki and Senator Ekweremadu had pleaded not guilty to charges of alleged criminal conspiracy and forgery of the Senate Standing Rules, 2015.
The two Senate leaders had been arraigned before the Federal High Court along with a former Clerk of the National Assembly, Mr Salisu Maikasuwa and his deputy, Mr Benedict Efeturi.
All four accused persons pleaded not guilty to the two-count charge.
The Court consequently granted bail to the accused persons.
Justice Halilu asked the them to produce two reasonable sureties who must be Nigerian men or women.
He stated that the sureties must own properties in Asokoro, Maitama, Wuse II or Garki areas in the Federal Capital Territory.