Some members of the upper chamber have vowed to tackle the government over its decision to appeal against Saraki’s acquittal at the Code of Conduct Tribunal.
The Senate President was acquitted of a false and anticipatory declaration of assets when he was governor of Kwara State.
According to Punch, the senators who spoke in separate interviews said the matter of the appeal would be raised when the National Assembly resumes from break on July 4, 2017.
The lawmakers said the appeal against the CCT judgment confirms that the executive is against the legislature.
On June 15, 2017, the CCT discharged and acquitted Saraki of all 18 charges preferred against him.
But on Tuesday, June 20, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, appealed the judgment.
Malami, through a private prosecuting counsel, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), and a lawyer in the AGF office, filed 11 grounds notice of appeal against the acquittal, describing the CCT’s judgment as unreasonable.
Reacting to the appeal, the Deputy Minority Whip, Senator Abiodun Olujimi, described it as another move to waste the country’s time and resources.
“I think the APC is a party that has failed to put its house in order. I don’t understand it (the appeal) at all because the CCT absolved him; what are they going to get from the Court of Appeal?”, Olujimi, who is a member of the minority Peoples Democratic Party caucus and representing Ekiti South Senatorial District, said.
“The CCT looked thoroughly at all the issues before making the pronouncement. Why are they wasting taxpayers’ money on such? And I think they will also regret it.
“I am sure that when we resume, we will send a strong signal to show that if there is no understanding between the arms of government, the government cannot make progress.
“I don’t know why they want to drag down Nigerians and box them with frivolous suits, which will never take anybody anywhere. We will do that as soon as we resume.”
Senator Danjuma La’ah (PDP, Kaduna-South), also questioned the action of the Federal Government following Saraki’s acquittal.
La’ah said, “The appeal by the Federal Government is a witch-hunt; the government only wants to bring down our Senate President.
They are fighting with every tooth and nail to make sure they stop him from contesting. He has not declared that he wants to contest (for the Presidency), so why are they bothering themselves? To tell you the fact, this issue is between the Acting President (Yemi Osinbajo) and Tinubu.
“We have our way of interacting and showing our concerns to the executive, and that will happen when we resume. We will not relent. We stood by him (Saraki) to the end, but they are not happy.
“Tinubu was given the opportunity (by not appealing against his acquittal by the CCT) even though his case was worse than that of the Senate President. I see no reason why the Senate President should not be given the same opportunity.”
However, a member of the APC from the South West, who did not want to be named, blamed the prosecution for losing the case.
“I don’t think the prosecutors were well-equipped. They had a bad case and they messed up their case. You cannot blame the judges; the prosecution gave the defence the room to manoeuvre because they (the prosecution) did not come with empirical evidence,” the APC member said.
In a statement issued on Friday, June 23, Saraki had expressed confidence that the appeal court would uphold the judgment of the CCT.
He alleged that there were forces in the President Muhammadu Buhari administration and collaborators outside the government who are bent on “pulling him down.”
“This appeal against the CCT ruling is nothing but another attempt to grandstand and embark on another media trial without any substance. This is why the Senate President is sure it will be another exercise in futility,” Saraki’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Yusuph Olaniyonu, said in the statement.