Tribunal to set new ‘no-case’ hearing date in Saraki Trial

Peter Bahago, Abuja

Nigeria's Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki

The Code of Conduct Tribunal sitting in Abuja has reserved ruling in the ‘no case submission’ filed by Nigeria’s Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki on his alleged false assets declaration trial to a date to be communicated to the parties involved.

This is sequel to the adoption of addresses by both counsels in the case.

In the no case submission argued by counsel to the Senate president, Mr Kanu Agabi claimed that “the prosecution has failed to established a case against his client  and as such, there was no need  to order him to enter defence in the tribunal.’’

Mr Agabi also told the Tribunal that throughout the prosecution of the case, the report on the investigation of the petitions against Dr. Saraki was never made available to the tribunal for verification.

“Aside the fact that the report on the investigation of the petitions was not made available to the tribunal by the Nigerian government, none of the petitioners was invited as witness in the charges against the defendant,’’ he stressed.

The defence counsel therefore urged the tribunal to carefully peruse the petition to be able to establish that the petition has nothing to do with the defendant.

Dismissal of no case submission
The prosecution Counsel, Mr Rotimi Jacobs while adopting his written address prayed the tribunal to dismiss the no case submission on the grounds that the Senate President has case to answer.

He drew the attention of the tribunal to some asset forms of the defendant and argued that investigations established false declaration of assets by Dr. Saraki.

Reacting after the ruling, the defense counsel Mr Paul Usoro further spoke on the reason for the motion on ‘no case submission’ filed by his client.

“The essence of it is to explain to the tribunal that there are certain elements of the offence that has not been proved,” he said.

Responding, the prosecution counsel Mr Rotimi Jacobs said he was surprised that despite the evidence before the tribunal the defense counsel filed a no case submission.

After taken arguments from the counsels said, the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, Mr Danladi Umar said he would consult his colleague to decide on the no case argument and a date for ruling on the no case argument would be communicated to the parties.

Mercy Chukwudiebere