FG files appeal against Senate President's CCT victory
The Senate President had been acquitted by the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) last week.
The Federal Government filed the 11 grounds notice of appeal after the Danladi Umar-led tribunal dismissed the government's case against the former Kwara state Governor on June 14.
The notice of appeal considered the acquittal as an overruling of previous decisions by the Court of Appeal in respect to the Senate President's trial, calling it, "unwarranted, unreasonable and against the weight of evidence".
The notice was signed by lead prosecuting counsel Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), and an Assistant Chief State Counsel in the Federal Ministry of Justice, Mr. Pius Akutah and said the tribunal's decision was wrong in its consideration of the case.
The notice read, "By the provisions of paragraphs 11 (2), (3) and (13) of Part 1, 5th Schedule to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), once the Code of Conduct form filled by the public officer is investigated and found to be false or that some assets are beyond the legitimate income of the public officer or that the assets were acquired by means of corrupt practices, the public officer concerned is deemed to have breached the Code of Conduct and it is for him to show to the tribunal that there is no infraction in the form.
"The honourable tribunal wrongly placed the onus of proof on the prosecution contrary to paragraphs 11 (2), (3) and (13) of Part 1, 5th Schedule to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).
"The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) clearly excluded the presumption of innocence on the allegation of infraction of the Code of Conduct by public officers and the Tribunal wrongly applied the presumption of innocence contrary to the constitutional requirement.
"The tribunal’s decision is unconstitutional and without jurisdiction."
In last week's ruling, Umar said the prosecution failed to prove the case of the 18-count false assets declaration charge against Saraki who had filed a no-case submission at the tribunal in May 2017.
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