Saraki not guilty of false assets declaration charges, says CCT

Senate President Bukola Saraki's time at the helm of Nigeria's upper parliamentary chamber has been marred by numerous accusations of misconduct and investigations, though none have stuck.

Meanwhile, in a preliminary reaction to the ruling, the executive chairman of the Centre for Anti-Corruption and Open Leadership (CACOL), Debo Adeniran said the centre finds the ruling to be very disturbing as it smacks of compromise on the side of the Federal Government.

The Code of Conduct Tribunal in the Nigerian capital Abuja ruled that federal prosecutors had failed to link Saraki to the allegations of false or non-declaration of assets and that all the charges were to be dismissed, Nigeria's Channels TV reported.

"To start with, I'm shocked, because a lot of materials were put before the court".

"One method your lordship should adopt to show that there is a serious prima facie case against the defendant is to look at Exhibits 6 and 26 which are asset declarations made by the defendant after the investigation of this case. It's shocking that's all I can say".

The Supreme Court had on February 5, 2016 dismissed Saraki's objection challenging his trial before the CCT.

The tribunal upheld the no-case-submission of Saraki, stressing that the evidence led by the prosecution was discredited under cross examination and therefore unreliable.

However, Mr. Sagay disagreed with Mr. Umar. So, nobody can blame poor prosecution in this case.

"We will go back to the drawing board, re-strategise because Nigeria must be saved".

Ekweremadu in a statement by his Special Adviser, Media and Publicity, said the judgment did not come to him as a surprise, given the trumped up forgery and conspiracy charges slammed against himself and the Senate President, which was later withdrawn by the Federal Government. The presence of black sheep in the judiciary will continue to render useless all plans and energy vested into flushing the nation of corruption.

The original charges from 2015 mostly related to the ownership of land held by Saraki's company Carlisle Properties Ltd between 2003 and 2011. "Nobody can charge me politically no matter how politically motivated he is against me, because I have nothing".

  • Salvatore Jensen