The chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, Danladi Umar, has issued a bench warrant for the arrest of Senate President Bukola Saraki for failing to appear before
the court on Friday.
ABOVE PHOTO: The chambers of the Code of Conduct Tribunal earlier today as Senate President Bukola Saraki fails to appear for trial over false declaration of assets
Saraki is a facing a 13-count charge of corruption and false declaration of assets. He was billed for arraignment this morning, but he rather sent his team of lawyers to represent him.
The senate persident had on Monday procured an interim injunction from the federal high court, Abuja, to temporarily stop his trial.
While presenting his brief today, his lawyer, Mahmud Magaji (SAN), served the tribunal with a copy of the ruling of Justice Ahmed Mohammed of the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, and asked the court to respect the subsisting order of the high court directing the chairman of the tribunal, the Code of Conduct Bureau, the ministry of justice and Saraki to appear before it Monday next week.
But Muslim Hassan, the prosecuting counsel who represents the federal government, argued that the high court does not have supervisory jurisdiction over the tribunal, adding that Saraki could not raise objections while he was absent from the court.
The FG through a deputy director in the office of the Attorney General of the Federation, Mr. M.S. Hassan, prayed the court to immediately issue a bench warrant for the arrest of the senate president.
Saraki through his lawyer, begged the tribunal to consider his position as the Senate President and stay the execution of the arrest warrant, saying he would be available for trial on Monday.
His plea was refused by Justice Umar who maintained that the accused person, having sworn to protect the constitution, ought to have shown respect to the tribunal by appearing before it today.
The tribunal granted Hassan’s prayer ordering Saraki’s arrest by 1.30pm.