Why I Appeared Before Code of Conduct Tribunal - Saraki
Senate president Bukola Saraki inside the accused box at the CCT
His media office on Monday, September 21, said the countryâ€™s number three citizen would attend his trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal today (September 22),
In a personal message signed by Saraki and made available to Naij.com, the embattled senate president if he were to be a Senator, nobody will be interested in the asset declaration form he filled over twelve years ago.
â€œToday, I appeared before the Code of Conduct Tribunal for the commencement of my trial in a case concerning the asset declaration form I filled in 2003 after I have explored the opportunity to defend my fundamental human rights in other courts.
â€œMy appearance in court today once again demonstrates my belief in the rule of law and respect for the judiciary of our country.
â€œAs I stated while taking the plea in the case, I reiterate my belief that the only reason while I am going through this trial is because I am Senate President. If I were to be just a Senator, I doubt if anybody will be interested in the asset declaration form I filled over twelve years ago.
â€œThis belief stems from the fact that Section 3 (d) of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act provides that If there is a breach or non-compliance with any section of the law, the person involved should be given the opportunity to either admit or deny and that in the case of a written admission, no reference to the Tribunal shall be necessary. So, If the CCB had followed the guidelines, procedure or the due process provided in its own law, we wonâ€™t be having this trial.
â€œIt is my humble opinion that this case is a vivid example that there is still flagrant disregard for due process in our polity. This trial is not only being observed by Nigerians alone, the international community is watching because Nigeria is a key member of this community. So, the executive, legislature and judiciary should do the right thing that will truly demonstrate that we have imbibed the spirit of positive change.
â€œIt is however necessary for me to thank my colleagues in the Senate for the solid support and solidarity they demonstrated for me. I also thank my counsel for the brilliance they have shown in presenting our case and the supporters who were present in the Tribunal in their hundreds. I want to assure you that I am innocent of all the charges and will clear my name in due course,â€ Saraki wrote.
Recall that the CCT ordered the arrest of Saraki yesterday, September 21, for failing to appear at the tribunal court to stand trial for a 13-count charge of corruption levelled against him by the Code of Conduct Bureau following his asset declaration.
Please LOGIN or REGISTER To Gain Full Access To This Article