Again, APC-FG goes after Saraki, Ekweremadu *Activates forgery charges

By Editor on 18/06/2016

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It is again another set of troubles for Senate President, Bukola Saraki and his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu, as the All Progressives Congress (APC) Federal Government, commences their prosecution for allegedly falsifying the standing rules of the Nigerian Senate to enable them emerge as principal officers of the Red Chamber.

The case, now before Justice Yusuf Haliru of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court, Abuja, also includes the immediate past Clerk to the National Assembly, Abubakar Maikasuwa and the Deputy Clerk to the National Assembly, Benedict Efeturi.

Brought by the office of the Attorney General of the Federation, the charge No. CR/219/16 dated 10th June 2016, for “criminal conspiracy, contrary to Section 97 of the Penal Code Law” and “Forgery contrary to 362 of the Penal Code Law” the government, also listed Salisu Abubakar Maikasuwa, Benedict Efeturi, former Clerk of the National Assemby (CAN), and his deputy, respectively.

Ekweremadu and Saraki

In its Particulars of Offence to count one, the Federal Government alleged that the accused persons committed the offence of Conspiracy, punishable under Section 97 (1) of the Penal Code Law.

The Federal Government further alleged that Saraki, Ekweremadu and others caused the Standing Order to be believed as the genuine Standing Orders, 2015 and circulated same for use during the inauguration of the 8th Senate of the National Assembly of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 364 of the Penal Code Law.

Initiated by D.E Kaswe Esq., Principal State Counsel on behalf of the AGF, the charge is sequel to the completion of investigation on the matter by the Nigerian police as deposed to at the Federal High Court Registry, Abuja on the same date by Okara Neji Jonah, a Litigation Officer at the Federal Ministry of Justice, Abuja.

The police, had, on July 27, last year, sought the advice of the AGF on whether to treat the matter as a purely criminal case or allow it as a part of the legislative process of the legislature.

But, apparently going for the former, the AGF has decided to prosecute the four people involved, a situation, which has raised further suspicion of political witch-hunt, especially with the exclusion of two of the principal officers similarly accused, but who are now members of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC).

The case is coming with a list of witnesses, which include Senator Othman Hunkuyi, Senator Ahmed Lawan, Senator Abdullahi Gumel, Senator Kabiru Marafa, Senator Robert Boroffice, Senator Gbenga Ashafa, and Senator Abu Ibrahim, all members of the Senate Unity Forum (SUF), the group of Senators that pushed unsuccessfully for the election of Senator Lawan as the Senate President.

Other witnesses include former Chairman, Senate Committee on Rules and Business, currently Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang; Deputy Inspector-General of Police (DIG) in charge of FCIID and one of the contenders for the Office of the IGP, Dan’Azumi Doma, and Special Adviser to the President on Political Matters, Senator Ojudu Babafemi.




Posted on June, 18 2016

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