The legislative processing, and arrangements to amend the Code of Conduct Act to ensure fair hearing for accused persons as well as remove the powers of the Code of Conduct Tribunal from adjudicating on criminal matters have begun. This is coming as the Senate unanimously endorsed the amendment of the Code of Conduct Act to remove the Code of Conduct Tribunal from the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, and the Presidency. At the Senate plenary which held yesterday, Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, was absent while Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, presided.
Speaking on the development, Ekweremadu said: “Let me just say that this bill absolutely has nothing to do with the proceedings going on at the Code of Conduct Tribunal in which the Senate President is involved because his trial has commenced, as you are aware, and if you look at the commencement of the bill, last paragraph says ‘this bill maybe sighted as a Code of Conduct Bureau Tribunal Act amendment bill, 2016. That means the bill is not being made retroactive as to affect the proceedings at the Code of Conduct Tribunal. Certainly, it has nothing to do with it.
“We are only doing our work as parliamentarians and it is our responsibility to ensure that there is justice for all at all time and we must not be afraid or scared to do the job which the constitution has given us. I believe it is in the course of our duty that this amendment is being proposed because the Code of Conduct Tribunal has come to stay and with all intent and purposes, we support the tribunal, we support the bureau but we would also make sure that in doing their work, there is also fairness, equity and all the principles enunciated in chapter four of our constitution dealing with human rights.”