Saraki Paid for a Property Seven Times -Witness

More revelation came to light, Monday, at the ongoing trial of the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, over false asseys declaration related mattets.

A prosecution witness, Michael Wetkas, led in evidence by the prosection lawyer, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), disclosed how the accused, Saraki allegedly bought a property at 17, Mcdonald Street, Ikoyi, Lagos,  and paid for it seven times, which summed up to N522,060,000m.

Wetkas, said he was an EFCC operatives, one of those who investigated the Senate President.

According to Wetkas, the property has the name of the buyer as Tiny Tee Limited from the Implementation from the Presidential Committee on the Sale of Federal Government Properties between 2006 and 2007.

He said, “The part payment was from GTB account of Carlie Properties and Investment Ltd.

“There is a draft before me for N256,300,000 which was part payment for 17, Mcdonald Street, Ikoyi, Lagos.

“There is another draft before me of N12,815,000 which was part payment for 17, Mcdonald, Ikoyi.

“There is another draft of a total of N24,090,000. That total is broken down into. – N20m from Zenith Bank and N4,090,000 from GTB. The total of the two are part payment for 17 Mcdonald, Ikoyi.

“The N20m from the Zenith Bank account of Carlie Properties and Investments Ltd while N4,090,000 was also from Carlie Properties and Investment Ltd with GTB.

“There is another draft before me for N180,675,000 dated April 3, 2007. It was also part payment for 17 Mcdonald Ikoyi from the defendant’s personal account with GTB.

“I have another draft of N36,135,000 dated January 10, 2007. The draft was cleared in Carlie Properties and Investments Ltd’s account in GTB and that also forms part payment for 17 Mcdonald, Ikoyi.

“There is another draft of N12,045,000 dated January 10, 2007.”

All the drafts were tendered and admitted as exhibits.

Also admitted as exhibits among other documents was Saraki’s asset declaration form submitted to the CCB in 2011.

The prosecution alleged in the 13 counts it preferred against Saraki that the property was part of those which the Senate President failed to declare to the Code of Conduct Bureau while he was Governor of Kwara State.

The lead prosecuting counsel, Jacobs through the witness, tendered cheques allegedly drawn from Saraki’s personal account and the account of his firm, Carlie Properties and Investments Limited for payment for the property.

Earlier, the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, Danladi Umar, has directed that the trial of the Senate President will henceforth proceed day to day from tMonday until the conclusion of the case.

He said the trial will begin 10am and end 6pm everyday.

Umar said his decision to conduct the trial day to day was in line with the provisions of section 396(6) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act.

He gave the directive in response to a request for one hour stand-down by the lawyer who represented the prosecution on Monday, Mr. Gabriel Esegine.

Esigine told the Tribunal that the lead prosecuting counsel, Jacobs asked for the stand-down to enable him to appear briefly before the Court of Appeal in Abuja.

But in response, Umar, who was not satisfied with the request for stand-down warned that the Tribunal would no longer wait for anybody.

He said, “By virtue of 396 (6) the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015, criminal trial of a defendant after arraignment shall proceed day to day.

“This is what the Tribunal intends to do. I’m saying this to both the prosecution and the defence, this tribunal will not wait for anybody.

“We will start by 10am till about 6pm till the conclusion of the case.

“For the benefit of those who want to pray we will give a break for about 15 minutes. By 4pm, we will give another 15 minutes break to enable people to stretch their legs.”

The lead defence counsel, Chief Kanu Agabi (SAN), however joined the prosecution in pleading with the tribunal to grant the stand-down.

The CCT chairman then stood the case down till 12pm.

Before that Saraki’s supporters had besieged the Tribunal premises in their thousands with posters bearing various inscriptions.

Some of placards read: “Nigerian youths and Students stand firm with Saraki,” “Let the Senate Continue Working,” and “No to the ongoing witch-hunt of Saraki.”

They also chanted slogans such as “Sai namu mai gaskiya” in Hausa language, meaning “Our man is a person of truth”

The trial continues tomorrow.


Author: News Editor

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