Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has reacted to the order by the Court of Appeal in Abuja that he should continue to face trial for three charges at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT). The Justice Tinuade Akomolafe Wilson led panel, yesterday gave the order while hearing an appeal filed by the Federal government challenging the decision of the CCT to acquit Saraki of the 18 charges of false asset declaration and other related offences filed against him in September 2015.
Justice Tinuade while ruling on the appeal by the Federal government, struck out 15 of the 18 count charges filed against Saraki but said the senate president has to return to the CCT for the remaining charges.
Reacting to the ruling, Saraki in a statement released yesterday, said the verdict by the Court of Appeal has vindicated him. Read his statement below
“We noted the verdict of the Court of Appeal Court today in which it agreed with the decision of the Code of Conduct Tribunal that Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki has no case to answer on 15 of the 18 charges filed against him by the Federal Government.
We believe that upholding the no case submission by Dr. Saraki with regards to 15 of the 18 counts charges vindicates the innocence of the Senate President. At least, today’s judgement has confirmed the position of the Tribunal that the prosecution’s case was entirely based on hearsay, not on any concrete evidence.
The verdict of the Court of Appeal, just like that of the Tribunal before it, aligned with our position that the preposterous claims made during trial by the prosecution concerning operation of foreign accounts, making anticipatory declarations, collecting double salaries, owning assets beyond his income and failure to declare assets owned by companies in which the Senate President owns interests, among others, have fallen like a pack of cards and lack any basis.
On the remaining three counts, which really touch on two issues, referred back to the Tribunal for the Senate President’s defence, it should be noted that the Appellate Court only gave a summary of its decision today promising to provide the parties with Certified True Copies of the Judgment soon. As soon as it makes the details of the judgement available, our lawyers will review the grounds of the decision and take appropriate action.
We remain convinced about the innocence of the Senate President on the three ( or two) counts because we believe the decision of the Court of Appeal is not consistent with the submissions made by both parties at the Tribunal. Thus, it is our view that that aspect of the judgment will not stand.
The confidence and faith of Dr. Saraki in the nation’s judiciary and its ability to dispense justice to all manners of people remains unshaken.
Special Adviser (Media and Publicity)