EXCLUSIVE! 2019 Agenda: How Tinubu, Saraki Sealed CCT’s Dismissal Charges Deal

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By The New Diplomat Political Intelligence Desk

Senate President Bukola Saraki and a National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu have resolved their political differences, a development which led  to a political deal that saw the Code of Conduct Tribunal(CCT) dismissing the 18 count charges of false asset declaration against the former.

High-level political and diplomatic sources confided in The New Diplomat that following a realization on the part of both Saraki and Tinubu that they both needed to resolve their political differences ahead of the 2019 cold Presidential calculations on the one hand and the fact that they both equally have enough political war-chest and arsenal to tackle each other at different fronts, a deal was said to have been brokered to end their hostilities toward each other.

Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (l), Danladi Umar and President Muhammadu Buhari

Said an insider: ‘’ You know that the Tinubu camp held Saraki in his jugular. They held him down with so much facts and the Tinubu camp have solid legal team which was deployed against the Saraki camp. Their crisis and differences started immediately Tinubu learnt that Saraki was one of those who blocked him from being Vice presidential Candidate to President Muhammadu Buhari during the 2015  presidential elections. On his part, Tinubu then mobilized against Saraki, trying to use Senator Lawan to dislodge Saraki as Senate President. But that failed and thus the issue of false Asset declaration came up from nowhere against Saraki. The Saraki camp believed it was the Tinubu camp that was using that to checkmate the Senate President. On his part, Saraki also had issues with Senator Oluremi Tinubu. Thereafter, a peace  deal was brokered. That paved the way for a positive resolution of their differences. So, a soft landing may have been worked out for Saraki.”            

Inside sources further revealed that both camps mutually reached a deal that ahead of the 2019 political calculations, it would be better for both sides to end their hostilities to avoid them undermining each other beyond control politically. In addition, while Tinubu wields much political influence both within and outside the APC Structure, Saraki seems to have majority of the Senators lined up behind him, a tool he has used to checkmate some oppositions.

It would be recalled that last Wednesday, Danladi Umar, chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, had held that the prosecution did not prove its case against the accused person. He said the testimonies of four witnesses presented by the prosecution were discredited, and as a result were unreliable.

He, therefore, subsequently dismissed the case, discharging the Senate President of the charges.The federal government had brought multiple counts of false asset declaration against Saraki. But the witnesses it brought to his trial was said to have given  contradictory testimonies. A witness from the Code of Conduct of Bureau (CCB), which filed the charges on behalf of the government, even said that the agency did not conduct an independent investigation before filing them.

During his trial which started in 2015, Saraki was represented by at least five lawyers, who are Senior Advocates of Nigeria, SANs and about 106 other lawyers. Saraki had even gone to the Supreme Court to have the charges quashed, but the apex court returned him to the tribunal which eventually cleared him of the charges last  Wednesday

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