The spillover of the controversies between the federal legislature and the executive in the last four years of the leadership of the National Assembly by Dr. Bukola Saraki, President of the Senate, may be sending dangerous signal of the perceived plot by President Muhammadu Buhari to finish up Saraki in gaol at the end of his tenure in June.
National Daily inquiry discovered that the Presidency is developing stringent legal procedures tied around anti-corruption war to nail the Senate President in jail.
Invariably, despite some court judgements on the legal battle between the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Saraki on certain investigations, an executive arm of government, the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), insisted that no previous court judgment can stop the investigation or prosecution of Saraki. Accordingly, the AGF Office approved the action of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) or any other law enforcement agency to investigate Saraki.
National Daily learned that in response to the suit filed by Saraki challenging his investigation by EFCC, the AGF maintained that the acquittal of the Senate President in previous criminal cases could not stop him from being charged with another offence.
It was indicated that the AGF, the Inspector-General of Police, the Department of State Service, the EFCC, the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission and the Code of Conduct Bureau are the respondents to the suit.
Saraki was said to have argued in the suit before Justice Taiwo Taiwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, that the interim seizure of his houses by the EFCC, as part of an ongoing criminal investigation, was a violation of his rights, stating that the investigation was on the same subject for which he had been previously tried and exonerated.
National Daily further learned that in a counter-affidavit, opposing Saraki’s suit, the AGF office declared: “That the suit FHC/ABJ/CS/152/2014 referred to by the applicant is premised on non-declaration of assets and the trial was conducted in the Code of Conduct Tribunal.
“That he knows as a fact by virtue of his training as a legal practitioner that a previous trial in the Code of Conduct Tribunal does not preclude further criminal trial in a competent court of law.”
The AGF office also dissociated itself from being part of any plot by the EFCC or any of the respondents to carry out any act of “a witch-hunt, vendetta, revenge or persecution” against Saraki on the whims of the All Progressives Congress (APC). Saraki had told the court that he is a subject of persecution by the ruling party government.
The AGF maintained that the discretion to initiate a criminal investigation against any person is a constitutional power to the second to the sixth respondents.
Justice Taiwo, thereafter, fixed June 24 for hearing of the suit.