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Saraki Pleads ‘Not Guilty’ To Amended Charges

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[caption id="attachment_7803" align="alignnone" width="690"]CREDIT: NaijDr. Bukola Saraki, President of the Nigerian Senate[/caption]

Senate president Bukola Saraki has pleaded not guilty to an amended sixteen count charges of alleged false declaration of asset filed against him at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).

The Senate President was first charged in September 2015 – more than 7 months after the commencement of his trial, with a 13 count charge of corruption and alleged false declaration of asset while he was governor of Kwara state between 2003 and 2007.

The two charges read, “That you on or about September 16, 2013 within the jurisdiction of this honorable tribunal did make a false declaration in the asset declaration form for public officers which you filled and submitted to the Code of Conduct Bureau upon assumption of office as the Governor of kwara State in the year 2003 by your failure to declare your leasehold interest in number 42, Remi Fani-kayode street, Ikeja, Lagos, which you acquired through your company, Skyview Properties Limited from first Finance Trust Limited on December 12, 1996 and you thereby committed an offence contrary to section 15(1)(2) of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act. CAP. C15, laws of the federation of Nigeria, 2004 and as incorporated under paragraph 11(1) (2), I fifth schedule to the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) and punishable under section 23(2) of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act as incorporated under paragraph 18, Part I of the fifth schedule to the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).”, it read

“That you between June 2011 and October 2013, within the jurisdiction of this honorable tribunal, did receive monthly salaries or emoluments as governor of kwara state and at the same time, from the federal government as a senator of the federal republic of Nigeria and you thereby committed an offence contrary to section 6(a) of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act. CAP. C15, laws of the federation of Nigeria, 2004 and as incorporated under paragraph 2(a), Part I of the, fifth schedule to the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) and punishable under section 23(2) of the Code of Conduct Bureau and tribunal act as incorporated under paragraph 18, Part I of the fifth schedule to the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).”

Meanwhile, barely an hour after the ruling was delivered, Saraki served the CCT with a copy of an appeal he has lodged against it before the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal.