Code of Conduct Tribunal Orders Walter Onnoghen To Defend Charges Against Him

The Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) has publicly rejected the no-case submission made in the trial by suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) identified as Justice Walter Onnoghen.

The Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) identified as Danladi Umar, in a ruling, stated that the prosecution has provided sufficient evidence to establish a prima facie case against the defendant, Onnoghen, to warrant his being called to enter his defence.

Danladi Umar, the CCT Tribunal chairman referred to a confessional statement made by the defendant in which he confessed to omitting to declare the five domiciliary accounts he has been operating in Standard Chartered Bank since the year 2009.

The CCT Chairman, Umar, also made it clear that the confessional statement was sufficient to warrant the tribunal to ask the defendant to enter his defence if he has any at all.

Meanwhile, Danladi Umar rejected the no-case submission and ordered the defendant to enter a defence against the six-count charge of non-declaration of assets brought against him by the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB).

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The CCT Chairman, Umar, further adjourned the case to Monday (April 1, 2019) for the defendant to open his defence.

However, the lawyers in the defence team expressed their displeasure and protested when Umar ignored appeals by lead defence lawyer identified as Adegboyega Awomolo (SAN) that April 1 was not enough time for the defendant to adequately prepare for his defence.

In addition,  Awomolo, the lead defence lawyer, was still standing up, asking the tribunal Chairman to allow the defendant sufficient time to prepare for his defence, the CCT Chairman, Umar, got up from his seat and walked away, leaving other members of the tribunal to run after him.

Meanwhile, a sorry Awomolo accused Umar of oppressing the defence.

As the CCT Chairman and the two other members of the tribunal went away, Awomolo, the lead defence counsel, said: “If this is justice, then, God bless Nigeria.”

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