Senate reopens assault case against CCT Boss

Posted by News Express | 19 October 2022 | 282 times

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•Chairman, CCT, Mr. Danladi Umar

The Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions has reopened the case of assault levelled against the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), Mr. Danladi Umar.

The CCT Chairman was seen in a viral video, allegedly assaulting one Clement Sargwak at the Bannex Plaza in Wuse 2, on March 29, 2021.

In seeking redress, the victim filed a  petition against Umar through his lawyers to the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petition to investigate.

Though the embattled CCT Chairman had on invitation, appeared before the committee once, he shunned several other invitations thereafter.

He informed the committee through his attorneys that he was already in court against the investigation.

The court gave a declarative judgment on the matter, saying that the Senate had the locus standi to proceed with the case.

The Chairman of the Senate panel, Senator Ayo Akinyelure, who addressed journalists on the matter on Wednesday, said the case against Umar had been reopened.

He said: “There was a petition against the CCT Chairman that he assaulted a young Nigerian, Clement Sargwak.

“The Senate believes that nobody is above the law. Both the young and the old voted for us to represent their interest in the National Assembly.

“The CCT Chairman infringed on the right of a young Nigerian who had no money to approach the court, brought his petition to the Senate.

“Rather than appearing before our committee, Umar went to court claiming that the Senate had no right to put him on trial.

“The Senate suspended the hearing on the matter till the outcome of the judgment. The High Court has now ruled the Senate has the right to continue the case.

“The Senate decided to reopen the case because it was a declarative judgment. He was to appear before us today but instead came with court papers claiming that he had appealed the judgment.

“He has now told us through his lawyer that he will never appear before the Senate Committee because the matter is already before the Court of Appeal.

“Danladi Umar is trying to fool the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and  we will never allow our name to be dragged in the mud.

“Umar has a lot of things to hide, he does not want to face the press because he knows that he has infringed on the rights of a Nigerian.

“Instead of apologising to the victims and his family, and possibly settle the bills of their lawyers, he believes that he could use his position to suppress justice. We will never allow it.”

In the suit with file no FHC/ABJ/ CS/671/2021, Umar is challenging “Senate’s Constitutional power to conduct Investigation and purpose for which it is exercisable.”

Specifically, the embattled CCT Chairman is asking the court to interprete the constitutional powers granted the Senate or House Committees on Ethics and Public Petitions whether it covers public assaults which as averred by his attorneys, are part of the constitutional functions of the police and the courts of law.

Copies of the originating summons and  suit signed by Sunday Edward (ESQ) and other attorneys from Abuka and Partners on behalf of Umar listed him as the plaintiff.

The document also listed the Senate, the President of the Senate, Senate’s Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions and the Attorney – General of the Federation (AGF) as defendants.

Umar asked the court to interprete the powers of the four defendants to investigate the case of assault in question.

In the summons, he also asked the court to determine among others:

“Whether the purported case of assault which allegedly took place at Banex Plaza on 29th March, 2021, forms part of the matters the 1st defendant is constitutionally empowered to investigate

“Whether the 1st defendant and its committee, that is, the 3rd defendant, are competent to investigate and/or invite the plaintiff in relation to the investigation of the allegation of assault levelled against him.

“Whether the powers of the 1st defendant to conduct investigation are not by and/or subject to provisions of sections 88 and 89 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 and are not exercisable for the purposes of making law and exposing corruption, inefficiency or waste in the execution of administration of laws within its legislative competence and in the disbursement or administration of funds appropriated by the 1st defendant, and

“Whether the 1st defendant’s move to conduct investigative hearing on the petition before it is not unconstitutional and does not amount to an unwarranted usurpation of the functions of the police and of the courts of competent jurisdiction.”

Umar then asked the court to stop the Senate from conducting further  investigative hearing, as the alleged victim (Clement Sargwak) had been sued.

Part of the summons read: “We write to inform you that the case between our client and Clement Sargwak is now before the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory ( suit no FCT /HC/ CV/ 1544/2021 Mr Danladi Umar vs Clement Sargwak).

“The issue as to whether or not Clement Sargwak had discontinued and/or withdrawn his petition before your Honourable Committee is equally sub judice.

“We trust that Senate, as the Upper Chamber of the National Assembly, will respect due process and refrain from delving into a matter that is before a court of competent jurisdiction.”


Source: News Express

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