Strong indications emerged on Sunday that Saraki might not enjoy the physical presence of most of his colleagues at the court on Monday (today) when his trial over an alleged case of forgery preferred against him and his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu, begins.
Investigations among senators who are loyal to Saraki and Ekweremadu by one of our correspondents revealed that they had not received any message asking them to be present in court, unlike the usual practice during the early period of the Senate President’s trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal.
Although, most of the senators contacted declined to speak on the issue because doing so, according to them, would be prejudice, they however said they had not been contacted to be in the court for the trial.
But the senator representing Enugu North, Godfrey Utazi, said the Presidency was crying more than the bereaved over the matter because the case, which was initially taken to court as a civil matter by some senators last year, had been quashed by an FCT Federal High Court.
He said, “The members of the Senate Unity Forum, who dragged Senator Ekweremadu and others to court, lost the case and they never appealed against it, how come the Presidency suddenly woke up one year after, and reopened the case.”
Meanwhile, despite his rejection of the mode of the service of the fresh forgery charges on him and others through substituted means, Saraki will still appear before the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Jabi, Abuja, today (Monday) for his scheduled arraignment, his lawyer, Mr. Ahmed Raji (SAN), has said.
Raji, in a telephone interview with one of our correspondents on Sunday, said it was better for the Senate President to attend the proceedings.
This is despite a motion filed by Saraki, through Raji, challenging the competence of the charges and the mode of service of the court summons on him.
In the said application, Saraki also asked the court to dispense with his presence in court pending the hearing of the application.
He asked the court to either quash the forgery charges or adjourn the case indefinitely till after the conclusion of his trial before the Code of Conduct Tribunal.
But his lawyer, speaking with one of our correspondents on the telephone on Sunday, said Saraki would attend Monday (today’s) proceedings and see how the case would go.
“He will be there. It is better for him to appear in person, then we will see how everything goes,” Raji said.