Chairman of the CCT, Danladi Umar has adjourned till February 8 for the prosecution to call more witnesses, in the ongoing trial of Senate President, Bukola Saraki.
The second prosecution witness in the case, Amazu Nwachuckwu, on Wednesday told the court that some of the documents the defendant used in operating a foreign account has been burnt by fire.
Nwachukwu, who is the Head of Funds Transfer Unit, Guaranty Trust Bank (GTBank), had on Tuesday told the court that Saraki operated foreign accounts between 2009 and 2012 when he was the governor of Kwara State.
He however said that some of the documents connecting to how Mr. Saraki transferred funds to the foreign accounts have been destroyed in a fire incident on December 24, 2011 at the GTB Ilorin branch.
When Saraki’s lawyer, Paul Usoro (SAN), cross-examined him, Nwachukwu said he was not in the unit in 2010 when the said fund transfer to American Express Service Ltd was made by Saraki.
Asked if he was familiar with the operations of Fortis Bank (one of the banks Saraki is accused of using to operate foreign accounts), he said no, but confirmed a transaction in relation of funds transferred by the Senate President to one of the foreign accounts.
He said, “In the transaction, the defendant (Saraki) made with my bank (GTB) in 2010, the beneficiary of the transaction is American Express Services Ltd. I can see the name of the beneficiary clearly and the bank account of the beneficiary based on the document given to me by the prosecution.”
On re-examination by Jacobs, the witness explained his position on the foreign accounts said to belong to Saraki.
He said, “I have made it clear that I never worked with the Fortis bank of London. I do not know how they number their customers’ accounts and I do not have any knowledge of any foreign account belonging to Saraki with the bank.
“I do not have any account with Fortis Bank, I never had any contact with the bank in relation to the defendant. I do not know how bank accounts are opened at the bank, I can only speak for my own bank.”
At the conclusion of Nwanchukwu’s evidence, the Tribunal Chairman, Umar adjourned till February 8 for the prosecution to call its witness.
Saraki served as Kwara State governor between 2003 and 2011 and has been a senator since leaving office as governor.
The Federal Government is prosecuting him on 6-count charges which include that he operated foreign accounts and failed to declare them, acts which the prosecution said, is contrary to public service rules.
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