Monday, 5 December 2016

Forgery: FG Dumps Fresh Police ProbeIndicting Saraki, Deputy

There were indications on Saturday that
the Federal Government is no longer
interested in pursuing the case of forgery
of the Senate Standing Orders, 2015,
allegedly masterminded by Senate
President, Bukola Saraki, and his deputy,
Ike Ekweremadu.
Investigations by SUNDAY PUNCH revealed
that the Federal Government might have
closed the case despite a fresh report of
further investigation unearthing new facts
about the forgery allegations.
SUNDAY PUNCH had exclusively reported
that the police submitted a fresh report of
investigation to the Office of the Attorney
General of the Federation and Minister of
Justice through the National Prosecution
Coordination Committee.
In the fresh report, the police indicted
Saraki and Ekweremadu.
The Federal Government had, on October
7, 2016, withdrawn the charges of criminal
conspiracy before a High Court of the
Federal Capital Territory, Jabi, Abuja.
Our correspondent gathered on Saturday
that the AGF office received fresh police
investigation some days after the charges
were withdrawn.
Secretary of the NPCC and a Special
Adviser to the AGF, Sylvester Imhanobe,
confirmed to our correspondent that the
AGF office received the report but that it
would not change the earlier decision to
withdraw the charges.
But a source in the Federal Ministry of
Justice told our correspondent that the
Federal Government also, partly resolved
to stop pursuing the case in order to
“bolster the rapport” with the Senate,
which President Muhammadu Buhari
“desperately needs to push through a
number of its policies”.
Saraki and Ekweremadu were earlier
charged alongside a former Clerk to the
National Assembly, Salisu Maikasuwa, and
a former deputy clerk, Mr. Ben Efeturi,for
allegedly forging the Senate Standing
Orders, which were used for the
inauguration of the Eight Senate.
All of them pleaded not guilty to the
charges and were granted bail .
A police operative told SUNDAY PUNCH on
Saturday, that the SIP had addressed the
loopholes the AGF identified in the former
report.
He said, “The police have concluded
investigations into the case and submitted
the report to the NPCC. This was done
about a month ago.”
Giving an insight into the report, a source
at the Force Headquarters said,
“Conspiracy is a very wide offence and
Maikasuwa couldn’t have done what he did
without the connivance of Saraki and
Ekweremadu.”
When asked if the panel made any
recommendation for the prosecution of the
beneficiaries of the forgery, he stated,
“There is no need to make any
recommendation to prosecute them
because the investigation did not exonerate
them.”
Another source, who was familiar with the
police probe, stated that the SIP was able to
gather necessary evidences on how the
alleged forgery was carried out.
The source said it was up to the AGF and
the NPCC to decide whether to re-arraign
Saraki, Ekweremadu and others.
It was gathered that the detectives were
able to verify the extent of amendment to
the Senate Standing Orders 2011, the
individuals who authorised it, and the
official who ordered the printing of the
Senate Standing Orders, 2015.
Our correspondents gathered that the SIP
had to bypass the Clerk, National Assembly,
Mohammed Sani-Omolori, to get the
necessary evidence and documents relating
to the case.

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