Sunday, 24 April 2016

15 Key Points from Senate President Bukola Saraki's Candid Response to Dele Momodu


1. "I did not do any deal with the PDP. I did not have to because even before the PDP Senators as a group took the decision to support my candidature on the eve of the inauguration of the 8th Senate, 22 PDP Senators had already written a letter supporting me"

2. "What I did not envisage was a situation where some members of my party would not be in the chambers that day, especially when the clerk had already received a proclamation from the President authorizing the inauguration of the Senate."


3. "Pray, if a team refused to turn up for a scheduled match and was consequently walked over, would it be fair to blame the team that turned up and claimed victory?"

4. "It was a game of numbers, and we were hopelessly outnumbered. If the PDP had nominated their own candidate for the Senate Presidency position that day, they would have won. It was as simple as that."

5. "...the President of the Senate is not an executive president. He is primarily one of 109 senators. Therefore, I cannot decide by myself who gets what in the Senate. Therefore, when they said I defied party directive in the choice of principal officers, they are invariably ascribing to me the power that I did not have."

6. "...I have no problem with anybody. My concern was that it would not be politically smart of us to run with a Muslim-Muslim ticket. I doubt if we would have won the election if we had done this, especially after the PDP had successfully framed us a Muslim party. I felt we were no longer in 1993."

7. "What they say to themselves, among other things, was that if he could conspire against our ambition, then he must not realize his own ambition as well... I only stood for what I believed was in the best interest of the party and in the best interest of Nigeria."

8. "I have had opportunity to declare my assets four times since 2003. Over those years, the Code of Conduct Bureau had examined my claims... you should be surprised that while I am being tried by the Code of Conduct Tribunal, the witness and the evidence supplied against me were all from EFCC."

9. "...the onus is not on me to prove that I have confidence in the judiciary; the burden is on my prosecutors to prove to the world that justice is done in my case. If the process of fighting corruption is itself corrupt, then whatever victory is recorded would remain tainted and puerile!"

10. "Strange things have happened, and they are still happening... It was on this basis that the case against Asiwaju Bola Tinubu was dismissed in 2011, by this same judge in this same Tribunal on the grounds that he was not given an opportunity to deny or admit to any breach before he was brought before the tribunal. This was the ruling that I relied on in making my case. But what did the judge say? That he had judged in error in 2011 and he had since realized his error and departed from it. My question is whether a Tribunal of first instance has the power to reverse itself... However, in spite of my fears, I remain hopeful. Why? Because the judiciary does not end with this Tribunal."

11. "I remain proud that I was the Senator that blew the lid on the most elaborate corruption scheme ever in this country. But after that I became a marked man. My security was withdrawn. I was invited and re-invited by the EFCC and the Special Fraud Unit. I was even declared wanted at a point. I believe I am still one of the most investigated former governors in this country."

12. "I do not expect to be shielded from prosecution because of my contribution to APC, if there was genuine basis for such action to be taken against me. But I have every reason to expect not to be persecuted by the party that I contributed so much to build."

13. "I have not expected any special compensation. Rather, I only expect to be treated like every loyal party member and accorded the right to freely aspire!"

14. "The Senators have freely accompanied me to the Tribunal not because they are loyal to me as Abubakar Bukola Saraki, but because they are committed to the principle that produced me as the President of the Senate. . They see all of us in the Senate leadership as manifestation of their jealously guarded right to freely choose their own leaders... They also know what this trial is all about. They believe I am being victimized because they have expressed their right to choose their own leadership. This is why I am not in any way perturbed by my absence in the chambers during this trial. Because I was not imposed on the Senate, I feel confident that the Senate will protect its own choice whether I am present or not... It is about the independence of the legislature. It has always been so since 1999. It is so today and it would be so in 2019, it would be so in 2023, and as long as we practice a democracy that operates on the principle of separation of powers."

15. “I am not alone in this trial. On trial with me in this process is the entire judicial system. On trial with me is our entire anti-corruption institutions and our avowed commitment to honestly fight corruption. On trial with me is our party’s promise to depart from the ways of the past, a promise that Nigerians voted for."

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments made by readers of this blog are strictly the views of the writers and not that of Nedu Echianu's Blog.