It appears Nigerian senators are fighting the battle of the embattled Senate President, Bukola Saraki, who is on trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal for false declaration of assets and fraud.
The Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions on Monday, April 19 directed the CCT Chairman, Danladi Umar to appear before it over allegations of corruption leveled against him.
The invitation by the Senate adds a twist to the ongoing trial of the Senate President at the CCT as Justice Umar had declared Saraki’s trial will run daily until completion .
Danladi Umar in 2015, was accused in a written petition of corruption and diverting public funds for personal use.
He was alleged to have used funds meant for the Code of Conduct Bureau to finance his wedding and for also a purchase of a Toyota Prado SUV without due process.
In a letter signed by the Clerk of the Committee, Freedom Odolo, the lawmakers directed Justice Umar to appear unfailingly on Thursday, April 21.
The letter reads; “Your letter with reference number CCT/HQ/ 126/S/ 111/ 515 dated 1st April, 2016 in which you requested for more time to enable you attend the hearing was received.”
“After due consideration of your request, the Committee rescheduled the hearing to give you at least two weeks from the 4th of April when you should have appeared.”
“Accordingly, you are now required to appear unfailingly as follows: Thursday, 21st April, 2016, Meeting Room 120 New Senate Building, National Assembly Complex. Time: 2pm.”
“Please, remember to come personally along with 12 copies of any written submission you may wish to present.”
Justice Umar however swiftly replied that he has a court sitting on the set date and all through the week and would therefore not be available until after the court sittings, which would be Saraki’s trial.
This move by the Senate is perceived as a counter attack against Danladi Umar who ordered that Saraki’s trial be held daily, a move which will deny the senate president his functional rights at the plenary sessions.