The Court of Appeal in Abuja on Friday dismissed an appeal by the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, challenging his trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal over alleged false declaration of his assets when he served as Kwara State Governor between 2003 and 2011.
The Federal Government had, through the Code of Conduct Bureau, filed a 13-count charge bordering on alleged false declaration of assets and corruption against Saraki, following which he approached the appellate court to quash his prosecution.
Delivering judgment, Justice Moore Adumein, who led the three-man panel of the Court of Appeal, held that the tribunal was properly constituted and dismissed Saraki’s interlocutory application.
“The CCT is a court of criminal jurisdiction, albeit with limited jurisdiction and was properly constituted.
“There is no inherent difference between a court and a tribunal. The only difference is that tribunals in most cases handle special cases,” Adumein said.
The Senate President had denied all the charges when they were read out to him the day he was arraigned before the tribunal.
The tribunal is slated to commence his trial in November.
It would be recalled that Saraki came under fire ever since he emerged as President of the Senate against the wish of his party, the APC, which had preferred Senator Ahmed Lawan from Borno State for the exalted position.
The Senate President’s wife Toyin too was recently quizzed by the ant-graft agency, EFCC, over alleged corruption when her husband was governor.