Sunday, July 26, 2015

Saraki election: Police confirm Senate forgery

The Nigeria Police have concluded their probe into the forgery of the Senate Standing Order and given a copy of the report to President Muhammadu Buhari, 
SUNDAY PUNCH is authoritatively reporting that even the President received a copy of the report last week.
The Police report confirmed that the Standing Rules used to inaugurate the 8th Assembly were forged, our source said.                                                    
In the report, the Police recommended the prosecution of those found culpable of forging the orders, which had been used in the controversial election of the Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki, and his deputy, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, on June 9, 2015.
Acting on a petition by Senator Sulaiman Hunkuyi (All Progressives Congress, Kaduna State), the Police had on July 6 quizzed Ekweremadu and Maikasuwa over an alleged forgery of the standing orders.
The petition alleged that some parts of the 2015 Senate Orders were different from the one ratified by the 6th Senate in 2010, which was used by the 7th Senate, as Standing Orders 2011.
The Police, on the strength of the petition, had subsequently quizzed the leadership of the 7th Senate, including former Senate President, Senator David Mark; his deputy (now Saraki’s deputy), Ike Ekweremadu; former Senate Leader, Victor Ndoma-Egba; and the former Chairman, Senate Committee on Rules and Business, Senator Ita Enang.
The Clerk to the National Assembly, Maikasuwa, who is the custodian of the Senate Standing Order was also invited for questioning by the police.
According to the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, the Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Solomon Arase, handed over copy of the investigative report to Buhari at the Presidential Villa in Abuja last Sunday.
The source said, “I can confirm to you that the President has a copy of the Police’s investigation report on the Senate forgery and I can also authoritatively tell you that the report confirmed that the Senate rules were forged. Notable among those recommended for prosecution in the National Assembly is the Clerk because he is the one that keeps the Standing Orders.”
Some senior legal practitioners had told SUNDAY PUNCH that forging a document like the Standing Rule of the Senate was a felony, which, according to them, is a criminal offence against the state that attracts a penalty of three years jail term, a fine or both.
However, when contacted on Saturday, the Force Public Relations Officer, Mr. Emmanuel Ojukwu, did not confirm if the President had received a copy of the report.
“The Police are still working on the report. Investigation is still going on,” he said.

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