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The Nigerian Senate has vowed to stand by its embattled president, Bukola Saraki, to the end, except if he is convicted of corruption allegations by the Code of Conduct of Tribunal.
The deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, who led the Senate plenary on Wednesday, said this after the lawmakers met behind closed doors for over two hours.
Mr. Saraki is standing trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal on a 13-count charge of false asset declaration.
His trial has gained momentum this week after the tribunal directed that hearings must go on a daily basis till the matter is concluded.
A group of All Progressives Congress senators, who had initially opposed Mr. Saraki’s emergence as president, had called for his resignation in view of his trial.
Kabiru Marafa, who speaks for the group, could not be immediately reached for comments.
The Senate also agreed to stand down the report of its Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions Committee on Mr. Marafa, a known critic of Mr. Saraki’s leadership.
Mr. Marafa had drawn the ire of some of his colleagues and was referred to Ethics Commuter after asking Senators to impeach Mr. Saraki to save the image of the Senate or risk being recalled by Nigerians.
Mr. Ekweremadu said the Senate also “agreed to put behind them all the crises that have engulfed the Eighth Senate”, and that all senators had resolved to “speak with one voice”.
He said all Senators who have cases in court against the Senate leadership were asked to withdraw their suits.
Mr. Marafa is currently in court challenging the constitution of Senate Committees, while Suleiman Hukunyi also petitioned the police over allegation of forgery of Senate Rules against Mr. Ekweremadu.
Mr. Ekweremadu also announced the composition of a 12-man committee consisting of two senators from the six geopolitical zones to resolve all pending issues.