From Godwin Tsa, Abuja
A Federal High Court in Abuja, yesterday, ordered the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), Danladi Yakubu Umar, to go and appear before the Senate probe panel over allegations of misconduct brought against him in a public petition.
The court dismissed Umar’s suit instituted against the Senate and others seeking to stop them from investigating him on an alleged public misconduct at Banex Plaza, in Abuja, on March 29, 2021.
Justice Inyang Ekwo, in a judgment in the suit, held that the case of the CCT chairman lacked merit and had no cogent reason to stop the Senate from undertaking its constitutional functions.
Justice Ekwo held that sections 88 and 89 of the 1999 constitution, under which the CCT boss sought to be protected by the court, did not confer any protection or refuge on him.
The judge said that as a public officer administering law relating to conduct of public officers, Umar has no reason to institute the suit to stop the senate from investigating a public petition seeking justice on moral standard.
The Judge also said that the Code of Conduct Bureau and Code of Conduct Tribunal Act 2010 are established by the Act of the National Assembly and as such, he is subject to investigation by the National Assembly.
Besides, the judge also said that section 2 of the Code of Conduct Bureau exposes Umar to investigation by the National Assembly than another Nigerian, adding that it will be illogical for him to seek to stop Senate probe, as doing so will give an impression that he is above the law.
Justice Ekwo, therefore, held that the declaratory reliefs sought by Umar for injunction against the Senate cannot be granted because the case lacked merit.
The CCT Chairman had, in his suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/ 671/2021, challenged the powers of the Senate and three others to investigate him in an alleged assault perpetrated against a security guard at Banex Plaza in Abuja.
The four defendants in the matter are the Senate, Senate President, Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions; and the Attorney General of the Federation, AGF
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