The Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, has described the triumph of the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) as another victory of Nigerians over tyranny.
Fayose, who drew the attention of Nigerians to number eight of his 22 predictions for the year 2017, said; “I am happy that I predicted that the CCT will absolve the Senate president in my 2017 predictions, and it has come to pass.”
Reacting to the CCT judgment discharging Saraki in a statement by his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, the governor said the judgment was another lesson for the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government that criminal cases are not won on the pages of newspapers.
He congratulated the Senate president, urging him to see the victory as a challenge to him and the entire members of the National Assembly to always stand up to defend the rule of law and fundamental rights of Nigerians.
The governor said, “I have maintained that the government of President Buhari is not fighting any corruption. Rather, what is being done is hiding under anti-corruption fight to persecute, humiliate, harass and malign perceived political enemies.
“They go about trying their perceived political foes in the media, with the aim of destroying their names when they do not have any evidence that can sustain court trial, and it is for this reason that they have been losing corruption cases.
“Look at all the noise they made when they started Senator Saraki’s case, it was as if he will be sent to jail the following week. But when it was time for them to prove their allegations, they could not.
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“Even the case of the former National Security Adviser (NSA), Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd), that they said stole $2.1billion arms money, and that destructive weapon capable of disrupting the peace of any city in Nigeria were found in his possession, why are they the ones seeking for secret trial while Dasuki that they accused is insisting on open trial?
“Up till today, they have not brought any evidence against Dasuki. They have not even been able to commence his trial. Instead, they have continually disobeyed court orders that he should be released from detention.”
Meanwhile, the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, has denied reports that he bribed Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), Danladi Umar to the tune of $2million to obtain victory in his ruling on Wednesday 14, 2017.
Recall that the Code of Conduct Tribunal sitting in Abuja, last Wednesday, ruled that Saraki has no case to answer in the 18-charge of non-declaration of assets brought against him by the Federal Government.
The judgement has generated a lot of controversies and comments from Nigerians.
However, a report by an online news outlet, SaharaReporters, alleged that a cash payment of a whopping $2 million went to CCT Chairman, Danladi Umar.
The newspaper claimed that a source close to the CCT revealed to them how Saraki and his lawyer, former Attorney General Kanu Agabi, had worked relentlessly since Saraki hired him, with the objective of stopping the trial one way or another.
It alleged that Agabi had formed a close relationship with Umar, whom he had hired out of Law School years ago to work in his private legal practice following his tenure as Attorney General of the Federation, AGF.
It further alleged that Umar’s brother, Sambo Umar, also worked with Agabi during his tenure as AGF.
Also alleging that a first meeting facilitated by former Governor of Bauchi state, Isa Yuguda in Abuja, Saraki reportedly offered the CCT Chairman $2m to acquit him of the false declaration charges he faced.
The newspaper added that Saraki did not speak the words during the alleged transaction but showed the figure to Mr. Umar typed on his phone, fearing that if he said the figure out loud he could be recorded.
Reacting, however, Saraki’s media aide, Bankole Omishore, told DAILYPOST that Chief Editor and owner of SaharaReporters, Omoyele Sowore came up with the allegation after his demand of $1 million from his principal was turned down.
According to him, “That guy [Sowore] is a liar! That’s how he goes about causing confusions here and there with fake, indefensible reports.
“He told Saraki to give him $1million which the Senate President didn’t understand why he should give him such amount of money and what it was meant for.
“Refusal to give him $1million led him to publish reports he cannot defend. If he has anything tangible to back up his claims, let him present it to the appropriate quarters.”