The Federal High Court in Abuja, on Tuesday, ordered the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), Danladi Umar, to appear before the Nigerian Senate for probe on allegations of misconduct brought against him in a public petition.
A 23-year-old security guard at the popular Banex Plaza, Wuse 2, Abuja, Clement Sargwak, had sent the petition to the Senate after he was assaulted by the CCT chairman on March 29 last year.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how Mr Umar was caught on camera slapping and kicking Mr Sargwak during a squabble between them over a parking space on the premises.
Mr Sargwak had petitioned the Senate through his lawyer, Timzing Ramnap, in quest of justice.
But Mr Umar filed a suit at the Federal High Court in Abuja to stop a probe into the matter by the Senate. He argued that the Senate lacked constitutional power to conduct a hearing on the complaint.
But delivering judgment on Tuesday, the judge, Inyang Ekwo, dismissed Mr Umar’s suit.
The court held that the case of the CCT chairman lacked merit and gave no cogent reason to stop the Senate from undertaking its constitutional functions.
The judge said Sections 88 and 89 of the 1999 constitution under which Mr Umar sought to be protected by the court did not confer any protection on him.
The judge further said as a public officer administering law relating to conduct of public officers, the plaintiff (Mr Umar) has no reason to institute the suit to stop the parliament from investigating a public petition seeking justice on moral standards.
The court also held that the Code of Conduct Bureau and Code of Conduct Tribunal Act 2010 was enacted by the National Assembly and as such, he is subject to investigation by the federal legislators.
The judge noted that it will be illogical for the CCT boss to seek to stop the senate probe as doing so will give an impression that he is above the law.
Mr Ekwo held that the declaratory prayers that were sought by Mr Umar for injunctions against the Senate could not be granted because the case lacked merit.