The Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami on Thursday again shunned the invitation to appear before the Senate committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters. It was the second time the Attorney General avoided sitting face-to-face with Senators to address issues on the suit he filed against principal officers of the Senate on alleged forgery of the Senate Standing Order.
The committee members refused to hear submissions of the Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Prosecution, Mr Okoi Obono Ubla, who was supposedly representing Malami. Senators present at the meeting were stunned to discover that instead of the AGF appearing or sending a direct representative from his office, it was an aide to Buhari that showed up. Provoked by the show of disrespect for the red chamber, chairman of the committee, Senator David Umaru (Niger East) declined to hear his submission, stressing that the invitation was to the Chief law officer of the federation and not to the President.
“We had hoped that his presence here would have shed more light on the case which is already pending before the Federal Capital Territory Court, the person who came is not answerable to the Attorney General of the Federation, but to the President and so we cannot take him”, he insisted. The Committee, out of anger, described the action by the Attorney General as “a slap in the face”. The Attorney General had earlier explained that his appearance before the Senate was unnecessary since the matter they invited over is already in the court. He had asked for time from the Senators to honour their subsequent invitation while he eventually failed to show up.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, David Babachir, had in a statement on Wednesday told the Senators to stop blaming the executive as the mastermind of the litigation against the Senate President, Bukola Saraki and his Deputy Ike Ekweremadu on the case of alleged forgery. The SGF debunked insinuation that the Presidency was denigrating the Senate as an institution by arraigning its principal officers in court, insisting rather that it is Saraki and Ekweremadu who should answer the charged preferred against them on the case of forgery