90 Lawyers Followed Saraki To Court Today: CCT Rejects Adjournment Request,1st Witness Enters Dock

90 lawyers saraki to court

April 5, 2016 – 90 Lawyers Followed Bukola Saraki To Court Today: CCT Rejects Adjournment Request As 1st Witness Enters Dock

By NaijaGists.com

Timeline of Bukola Saraki’s CCT trial in court today….

  • Justice Umar arrived the courtroom around 10.31 am and immediately set off proceedings. The Senate President entered the dock immediately after the case was called.
  • Rotimi Jacobs, the prosecution counsel then announced his appearance. The Defence Counsel is being led by Paul Usoro. He is leading a team of over 90 lawyers. He told the Tribunal that Agabi who travelled to Akwa Ibom could not return Abua due to flight difficulties.
  • Jacobs said he was served motion for stay of proceedings about 30 minutes to the commencement of trial. He asked the court to proceed with the trial, arguing that, a motion filed when a court is a about to proceed cannot stop the trial. He also said the motion was filed today 5 April. “My Lord, we are ready,” said Rotimi.

But the defence counsel said the request for adjournment was not based on the process filed in court. He said the application was based on the ruling of the court of 24 March, 2016 which has been appealed.

He said the application for stay of proceedings filed before the Court of Appeal is already in the records of the Tribunal and pending before the Court of Appeal. The motion, he said was for the court to stay proceedings of the Tribunal.

He also informed the Tribunal that the Court of Appeal has already fixed 26 April for the hearing of the application which he said is only some days away.

Saraki’s Trial Adjourned For 15 Minutes

The Code of Conduct Tribunal has adjourned for 15 minutes to rule on a request by Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki for the adjournment of trial.

Before taking the decision to take a recess, Paul Usoro, standing in for Chief Kanu Agabi, had in his response to the argument of the prosecution counsel argued that the Tribunal asked the tribunal to strike out the request for stay of proceedings before it if it constitutes abuse of court process.

He also argued that adjournment and stay of proceedings are not the same, hence they were treated differently in law.
He also argued that the principle of law for adjournment and stay of proceedings are different.

Chairman Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) Justice Danladi Umar has said that after analysing all the issues raised have come to the conclusion that the matter cannot be adjourned as the Tribunal has ruled that it has jurisdiction to hear the same and the position that has been affirmed by the Supreme Court.

He said since the Tribunal has ruled last week that the trial will commence today and “it is ready to take the witnesses for commencement of trial.”

Saraki who is without is lead counsel, Kanu Agabi (SAN) is in court with 90 lawyers.

Saraki’s Trial Resumes

The Code of Conduct Tribunal had earlier adjourned for 15 minutes to rule on a request by Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki for the adjournment of trial.

Before taking the decision to take a recess, Paul Usoro, standing in for Chief Kanu Agabi, had in his response to the argument of the prosecution counsel argued that the Tribunal asked the tribunal to strike out the request for stay of proceedings before it if it constitutes abuse of court process.

Jacobs said he was served the motion for stay of proceedings about 30 minutes to the commencement of trial. He asked the court to proceed with the trial arguing that a motion filed when a court is about to proceed cannot stop the trial. He also said the motion was filed today 5 April.
“My Lord, we are ready,” said Rotimi.

First Prosecution Witness Testifies Against Bukola Saraki

The first prosecution witness against Senator Bukola Saraki who is tried for 13-count charge including false asset declaration has entered the dock.

The witness is a young man in black suit. His identity is yet to be disclosed.
But Saraki’s counsel, Paul Usoro again has asked the court for adjournment but chairman CCT, Justice Umar said he has already ruled on it and asked him to sit down.

But Usoro persisted, arguing that he is coming into the matter for the first time and the lead counsel is not available.

He asked the court to adjourn to enable the lead counsel come in or to enable him take proper instructions to proceed with the case.

Justice Umar said the witness should be allowed to give his evidence, then he can leave cross-examine or wait for the lead counsel to be present.

[Report With PM News, Sahara Reporter & Premium Times]