Epunchng - Most read newspaper in Nigeria Wednesday November 15 2017 - Page 9

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 2017 news 9 Court reserves judgment on FG’s appeal against Saraki’s acquittal Ade Adesomoju, Abuja T he Court of Appeal in Abuja on Tuesday reserved its judgment on the appeal filed by the Federal Government to challenge the acquittal of the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, by the Code of Conduct Tribunal. The three-man panel of the Court of Appeal, led by Justice Tinuade Akomolafe-Wilson, reserved judgment after parties adopted their appellant’s and respondent’s briefs on Tuesday. The date of the delivery of the judgment is to be later communicated to the parties. The Federal Government had on June 22, 2017 filed an 11-ground notice of appeal against the June 14, 2017 judgment of the CCT acquitting Saraki of the 18 charges of false asset declaration and other related offences preferred against him in September, 2015. The two-man panel of the CCT headed by Danladi Umar had anchored its decision on the grounds that the prosecution, with its four witnesses and 48 documentary exhibits tendered, was unable to establish any prima facie case against the Senate President. Umar, in his lead ruling, exonerated Saraki, holding that failure of the prosecution to obtain Saraki’s statement and make it a part of the proof of evidence was fatal to the case. He said it was “absurd” that neither Saraki’s statement nor the report of investigation said to have been carried out was produced before the tribunal. He agreed with the defence team, led by Chief Kanu Agabi (SAN), that the prosecution’s evidence had been manifestly discredited during cross- examination by the defence. He added that the evidence adduced by the prosecution led by Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN) was “so unreliable that no reasonable tribunal could convict” based on it. The tribunal chairman specifically noted that the third prosecution witness, Mr. Samuel Madojemu, who is Head, Intelligence Unit of the Code of Conduct Bureau, only gave hearsay evidence on the information the witness purportedly received from the EFCC. But the Office of the Attorney- General of the Federation, through its private prosecutor, Jacobs, on June 20, 2017, filed an 11-ground notice of appeal against the CCT’s judgment. It faulted all the grounds on which the CCT predicated Saraki’s acquittal, describing the entire judgment as unreasonable and unconstitutional. Jacobs subsequently filed an appellant’s brief on July 28, 2017 formulating five issues for determination. Saraki, through his lead counsel, Chief Kanu Agabi (SAN), also filed his respondent’s brief on August 22, 2017. While adopting his appellant’s brief on Tuesday, Jacobs urged the court to grant the Federal Government’s appeal and hold that the judgment of the CCT was perverse. He also reiterated that the CCT erred by adjudging the oral evidence of the prosecution’s third witness, Madojemu, the Head, Intelligence Unit of the CCB, as hearsay. He said, “It is our position that the lower tribunal did not consider the evidence adduced by the prosecution. “The empahsis I will like to make is on the evidence of PW3. “We argued that there is nothing like hearsay evidence in the oral evidence of PW3, who is the investigative officer. “There are author FW2`FR7W&VR6W'BFB606RFRWfFV6RbvFW7027W'FVB'F7VVF'WfFV6R2&FW7F0W&VǒFRvW"FBG2FPWfFV6R( Ф&wVr2ffR77VW2f FWFW&֖F2VN( 0'&Vb6'2W&vVBFR6W'B`VFBFBFR6FR`6GV7BG&'Vv2w&r( WFr66R7V&֗76&6VB'FR&W7FVBBFP66Rb&6V7WF( 266R( ФR6W&vVBFR6W'BFBFBFRV&VBV&W'0bFRG&'VvW&Rw&r( ƖআFrFBFR&W7FVBv2BfFVB'FRTd42FP6W'6RbG2fW7FvF( ФR6&wVVBFBFPG&'Vv2w&r( ƖFpFBFRfW7FvF6GV7FV@'FVbfW7FvF'2g&ЧFRV6֖2Bf67&W26֗76BFP6FRb6GV7B'W&VRv0VvBVvFr( ФR6&wVVBFBFPG&'Vv2w&r( ƖFpFBfW&RF&GV6RFP&v76WBFV6&Ff&0BFRw&GFV7FFVVB`FR&W7FVB2fFFFP66RbFR&6V7WFvVFR&6V7WFFVFW&VBFP6W'FfVBG'VR6W2bFPF7VVG2( Ф6'26&wVVBFBFP6FRb6GV7BG&'Vv0w&r( ƖWFrFR66P7V&֗76FR7FB66R&Vv&B&VrBFFRW2`&bFR'FW22&W67&&V@'FR67FGWFbFRfVFW&&WV&Ɩ2bvW&0VFVB( Ф66VFr2'&Vb`&wVVBRW&vVBFR6W'@FrFRVBF&V7@6&FV2FVfV6R&Vf&PFR45BआR7FFVB( ĖfWrbFP&wVVB6f76VB&fRvPW&vRW"&G62FrFPWrVFW&Rf6R&VFW&FVB2FF6֗FVBFFRvVf&R`v&W'2VF7FFR( B֖FrFR7FF^( 0&ƗGF6&W22@vVGVRvrFV6G`gVBvB66v&W VFW"wV6R( R6BFRvfW&"6BBv06BFB'V&v6PvfW&VB&֗6VBF7&VFR'2f"vW&2v07W'FrFRfRFF&p#"FV6W'2FFP&W"&WBgFW"6W6p72b֖Ɩ2b'2FP&fFR6V7F"B66R`6WfW&6W266&FrFFP&W6FVN( 26Fv2FW"FB&W"VFW'2FR6VG'6VB&W&Pf"7266rbv&W'0'FR2vfW&VG2&FBFRfVFW&B7FFRWfV2f6R6B( ĆW&RVF7FFRFRVFFR7B0vfW&VBW6VB6WFV7FW7BFFVFR琧6V6F'66&62f6R&62B&'66VGFV6W'2VFpF7VFFVFVFb`FVFRvfW&VBFVG&VBFf&6RFR6WFV7FW7BFRFV6W'2'WBFW&W67FVB( FF7GVFVG2VF7FFR&R7F&VrFVv@'FR6RFV6W'2F@FR2vfW&VB6@vW&RB6WFVBBFP7GVFVG2vW&RFRW2v6PW&f&6RvfRFR7FFPf'7B6FT4#`B#r( FR7FFR6fVBg&У#bW"6VBW&f&6PFRvW7Bg&6W֖F6V6( 26V 6V6F'666W'Ff6FP( $#f&W"FWWG&W6FVBbFR6VFR6VF"'&GSV&W"FV&6vFV&bदW''vvfW&"b7&72&fW"7FFR&b&VFSF6&67&BbFRV^( 2FV7&F0'G&bGVFRFV&BF&V7F"vVW&bFR6v6֗GFVRƆ6VRW6GW&rf6BFFRvfW&VBW6R6&"GVW6FFFV&6vFVЦV&W6fRFR77VW2ffW"bFRVBB@FBFRVB2FRWB6V"66Rv7BFR&W7FV@Fv'&B6ƖrWFV2FVfV6R( vRFW&Vf&RW&vRW &G62F&V֗BFR66R&6FFRG&'Vf"FRFVfVF@FV2FVfV6R( Ф2&7V&֗76GVW6F6'2W&vVBFR6W'@FBFBFR45B'VƖrv0W'fW'6RआR6B( ĒW&vRW"&G6FrF2VB@FBFR'VƖrbFRG&'V0@RVF7FFRvfW&"FVRf6R06FVVB&W6FV@VGR'V&( 07W'Bf"FRGV7FFPvfW&VN( 2VB66pb&WB#"FV6W'0FBfVB6WFV7FW7@6GV7FVB'FRvfW&VBFRvfW&"6B'Vǐ7W'FrFRV@66rb&WB#"FV6W'2GV7FFRFR&W6FVBB&fV@72b'22FRff6Ɩ7bFR&w&W76fW06w&W727FVBb7&VFpF&VR֖Ɩ'2W"V"F@FR'G&֗6VBvW&2ख7FFVVB77VVBFVFGVW6FB6vV@'27V6767FBV&Ɩ26V6F2@v6RW&vVBFR6W'BF7vW FRff&FfR( vWFW"FPG&'Vv2&vBvVBVB6G&'FFR7V&֗76bFP&6V7WFFBFR'W&FV`&bv2WFR&6V7WFBBFRFVfVFBBF@FR&6V7WFfVBFF66&vPFB'W&FVFR6&vW27FGWFV@v7B6&&Vf&RFR45@&VFVBFFRVvVB'&V6W0bFR6FRb6GV7Bf"V&Ɩ0ff6W'27G2v6vW&R6@F&RV6&RVFW"FP67FGWFBFR44"45@7BR&g&VCF( 2WFR6W2&BFG&fV'&@FV&@RfVFW&v6W'Bv2GVW6F&VV7FVBFPVbf&W"7V6Gf6W"FW&W6FVBvFV6FFW7F2ff'2v&ФvVGVFfFG&fV'&Bf VF6G&VFVBGVFfv2&Vp&6V7WFVBf"VvVBg&V@ffrR&6VBFfR7W7FVB76&@W'vRFRFWFVFf6ƗGbFRV6֖2@f67&W26֗76आ2wW""FVv&VvWvR4VFVBvFW7F6RVBG&2FFV6W'>( 66sf6R62'V&f"&6rV'Vf'VFVVwVFVRFVFW'fW'6R( Ф&W76Rv&W&vV@FR6W'BFF6֗72FRfVFW&vfW&VN( 2Vf"6pW&Bv&67FVBFBFRF&@&6V7WFvFW7>( WfFV6R6G&'F6'>( 6FVFv2V'6आR6&wVVBFBFP&6V7WFw&vǒ6FVFV@FBFRW2v26&F&fR26V6RFR&V6vR6BFR&6V7WFfVBF6VVvvFW76W2आR7V&֗GFVBFFR6W'@2 77VW2f"FWFW&֖F@W֖F#BF3bPW"6VB#RC"W"6V@#bBsBbW"6V@#r( ХvRFV6&rFB@v2BFR&vBb7FFPvfW&VBF6WBW2f FV6W'2f6R&wVVBF@FRFV6W'2&Vv7G&F6V6bvW&v26WBWf"FRW'6Rb&VwVFrFPFV6r&fW76vW&( FW&Vf&R7FVB`FrVFW"6WFV7FW7BF66FV6W'2FR0vfW&VB&FBFR7FFW0BfVFW&vfW&VG06VB6RFVF7FFPBV&rvRvW&R&PFvWBFVW&f&6Pg&FR6R6WBbFV6W'0FBFRVFFR7B0vfW&VBFR7FFP&VVB6WFVB@&76VBvF6WFV7FW7B( RFFVB&FW"FR&VV6Rb26ƖVN( 077'B6R6VB6VVVF6FW'fVF'&B'WBFRVFvR'VƖrF6֗76VBFRƖ6FFrFBB6VBW&BFRVFvRVBFBGVFffVBFF7&fRFR&wVV@WBf'v&B'FRTd42BFPWW'B&W'BFB26FF6VB&RG&VFVBvW&( ĖfWrbFRfW'vV֖pWfFV6R&Vf&RRfB@Fff7VBFw&BF2Ɩ6F㰧6R2W&V'F6֗76VB( FPVFvRVB6V6Vf"FRTd42"&F֒VFW@fVVVFǒ6VBFPƖ6FFW67&&rB2F7FGVFf( 2G&GVFf2f6r#26VG0w6FR266VBff6W"@W&FvR&6WwVVvVvVFǒFVBW'WG&FrFRg&VBFRTd42VvVBFBGVFf6f6RvFwVVW6V@f&W26W2FVFW f&W27V2bW'VpF&WBR&&WGvVVVP#2BVR#RFRBr&bBrR26VBFBFRWVFVBg&FRff6RbFPF6V7W&GGf6W"FVVFW"FRvF6b66&F7V&WFB␥FR6W2VvVFǐW6VB'FRFVfVFG2vW&PƗ7FVB26VvFR&W'GFWfVVBbfW7FV@Ɩ֗FVCfv&&W'GFWfVVB6琤Ɩ֗FVCWF&W'G@fW7FVB6Ɩ֗FVCB&FFRFW&Ɩ6W'f6W0Ɩ֗FVC&VvR6W'f6W0Ɩ֗FVCFTW2f7BfB`&W7FW&BvW&Ɩ֗FVC@V&v6R&W6W&6W2FRffV6R26BF&P6G&'F6V7F`FRWVFW&p&&FVFVB7B#"BV6&RVFW 6V7FrbFR6R7B'WBGVFfBwVVVFVBBwVGgW'FW"&6VVFw2vW&PFW&VBFvVFW6Fff2FRF&VFV0F7VRdpVVGR'VV&vG2wW""fV֒f406BRvvVFW6FFF7VRFRfVFW&vfW&VBfvrFPW&W2R7W7FVBgFW fƖrFRf6BF2vPFVƗfW&r27VV6BFPF7FVFW'>( 7V֗@v7FR&vr'VGVW6FआR6B( Ē7W&RR6pRƖrBW6rvƶp7F6vVv26֖r@2&V6W6RfVFPvRvƶrFגff6R6VR6v&v( Ē'&RגVrBЦWfVvV&r7FW"b&0Bv2WfV7FƗ6VB6v( BƖRFR&F'vW&VfRBFvB( ĒfRFV6FVBF@F'&rv7VRFRfVFW&vfW&VB(