The tension between the Senate President Dr. Bukola Saraki and the chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, Danladi Umar took a new dimension as the Senate President through his lawyers have asked the CCT Boss to hands off his trial claiming that he cant get a fair hearing under him.
His position is contained in a fresh motion on notice brought pursuant to section 36 of the 1999 Constitution, wherein Saraki insisted that the Tribunal Chairman was in a hurry to convict him without giving him a fair hearing and a fair opportunity to defend himself.
The defense counsel Mr. Kanu Agabi (SAN), expressed worries about prejudice as rooted in what he considered a threat by the Tribunal Chairman that the delay tactics allegedly employed him in his trial on false asset declaration will not reduce the consequences that he will meet from the tribunal at the end of trial.
He argued that the threat made by Umar in the open court was a clear indication that the tribunal had a pre-determined position to convict him at all cost irrespective of the evidences at the trial.
Part of the grounds of the motion was that the defendant (Saraki) has lost confidence in the ability of the tribunal chairman to conduct a fair trial and dispense justice according to law.
“The defendant is deeply worried and lives in perpetual fear since the statement was made by the chairman of the Tribunal and no longer believes that justice can be done in the trial”.
Saraki denied the allegation by the Tribunal Chairman that his lawyers have been employing delay tactics to slow down or frustrate the trial.
It will be recalled that on June 7, the tribunal chairman Mr. Danladi Umar had threatened Saraki in the open court that he would be made to face the consequences of the delay tactics being employed by his lawyers to delay the trial.
Umar said that he was not happy with the delay and that the defendant should be ready to face the consequences at the end of the trial because the delay tactics will not reduce the consequences that would be imposed on him.