Tribunal blames failure to handle cases outside Abuja on Lack of funds
The Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) sitting in Abuja, on Thursday, blamed its inability to adjudicate on cases before it from outside Abuja on acute shortage of fund.
Mr Abdulmalik Shuaibu, the Chief Registrar of CCT stated this in Abuja in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
NAN reports that the tribunal had not been able to hear cases brought before it in past two years from outside Abuja.
Shuaibu also blamed failure of the tribunal to sit in January and February on a scheduled trip outside the country involving its chairman and other government functionaries.
“It was only in June again that we could not hold session because we had scheduled an antennary sessions in Enugu and Akwa Ibom.
“By this, we had planned to move the tribunal physically to other parts of the country but due to irregular releases of fund by the government, our activities were hampered.
“The issue of moving the tribunal from Abuja to these states involves payment of our core staff, judges and then fuelling and maintenance of vehicles,” he said.
Shuaibu said that the tribunal had adopted a strategy of hearing cases of suspects in states, who could afford to come to Abuja.
“What we now devised to get out of this problem of lack of finance was to scrutinise the list of accused persons before us.
“Identify individuals, like Permanent Secretaries, Directors and others that can afford trip to Abuja and summon them to Abuja for trial.
“The remaining people on the list who are mainly civil servants and councillors cannot be classified as awaiting trials because they have not been arraigned in the first place,” he added.
According to him, their names are only on the list of defaulters sent to the tribunal by the bureau which involve either failure to submit or late submission of assets declaration forms.
He said that the core mandate of the tribunal was to take justice closer to the people through antennary sessions in different parts of the country.
Shuaibu, however, noted that the session would resume as soon as funds were made available to the tribunal.