Saraki failed to declare his assets, witness tells Tribunal

Senate President, Sen. Bukola Sakaki in CCT witness box

 …as FG slams fresh charges on him

A Prosecution witness in the ongoing trial of Senate President Bukola Saraki, on Wednesday, told the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) sitting in Abuja that Sakari, while serving as Kwara State Governor failed to declare some of his assets as required by law.

 The witness, Mr. Samuel Madujemu, who is the third so far called by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), prosecuting the Senate President on behalf of the Federal Government told the Tribunal that Saraki did not declare a property on 15 MacDonald Ikoyi in Lagos State which he allegedly acquired with the sum of N3000 million and Tiny-T, a company he also refused to declare at the end of his tenure as the governor of Kwara state.
Day 1 of Saraki’s Corruption trial 2

The witness, who is an administration officer in charge of Investigation Division at the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB), who was led in evidence by the prosecution counsel, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), disclosed that his team that investigated the case involving the Senate President comprise of the EFCC and CCB intelligence officers.

Madujemu who came to the Tribunal with Certified True Copies (CTC) of Saraki’s assets declaration forms for the various periods told the Tribunal that, “One of the discrepancies we discovered has to do with false declaration and non-declaration of some assets and liabilities.

“The property on number 15 MacDonald was acquired at Ikoyi in Lagos in 2006 but it was not declared in the defendant’s end of tenure declaration form as governor”, he said adding that, what prompted the further investigation of Saraki’s property was the discrepancies that were noticed by the first investigating team of the EFCC.

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He said it was on that basis that the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) authorised an inter-agency probe of the defendant’s assets.

Meanwhile, the EFCC at yesterday’s proceedings slammed a fresh charge of 18-counts on the Senate President.

The prosecution counsel told the Tribunal that the prosecution decided to file fresh charges after discovering several additional evidences that would advance its case against the defendant.

It would be recalled that the anti-graft agency had initially filed a 13-count charge against the Senate President and later increased the charges to 16-counts.

The fresh charge brought against Saraki halted the proceedings yesterday as the defence team led by former AGF and Minister of Justice, Mr. Kanu Agabi (SAN), asked for an adjournment to enable his client (Saraki) study the charge before taking his plea.

Opposing Agabi’s oral request for adjournment, the prosecution counsel said any long adjournment would delay the trial and urged the Justice Danladi Yakubu Umar led two-member panel to compel the defendant to take his plea.

The chairman of the Tribunal, in a short ruling, adjourned the till February 23, 2017, for the re-arraignment and continuation of trial of the Senate President’s trial.

Saraki is standing trial over allegedly false and improper declaration of his assets said to be acquired when he was governor of Kwara state from 2003 t0 2011.

The Senate President had pleaded not guilty to all the charges earlier preferred against him by the Federal Government.

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