Assets’ declaration: Hearing on Useni’s case stalled
The failure by the Code of Conduct Tribunal to form a quorum stalled hearing on the case against the former Federal Capital Territory Minister, Lt. Gen. Jeremiah Timbut Useni (rtd), on Wednesday.
Tribunal Chairman, Danladi Yakubu Umar, regretted the tribunal’s inability to form a quorum.
He explained that the two other members of the tribunal were unavoidably absent and pleaded with all present to bear with the tribunal. He adjourned hearing till June 25.
Useni is being tried on a five count-charge brought against him by the Federal Government marked: CCT/FRC/ABJ/1/01/2000.
He is charged with alleged failure to declare his assets on assuming office and on completion of his tenure; running private businesses while in office and abuse of office by allegedly allocating plots of land to himself and companies in which he has interest, among others.
The tribunal was to hear Useni’s motion challenging government’s seizure of five of his choice property in Abuja and Port Harcourt on Wednesday.
It is his contention that the property, seized under the administration of ex-president Olusegun Obasanjo, were not taken over on the order of a competent court.
He is praying the tribunal to order that documents relating to the property be retrieved from the government and held by the tribunal pending the completion of his trial. The property include plot 3348 Cadastral Zone A5 (held in the name of Tim- Tali Shipping an Marine Services); plot 3346 Cadastral Zone 6 (held in the name of Messrs Tim-Tali Motel Nigeria Limited); plot 2233 Cadastral Zone 2 (Julnan Enterprises Nigeria Limited); plot 1881 Cadastral Zone 4, Asokoro (Jebut Business Enterprises) and plot 99C, Olumeni Street, Old GRA, Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Useni stated in a supporting affidavit that the property had been seized by the then National Security Adviser (NSA) and Attorney General of the Federation before a formal charge was filed against him.
The Federal Government, in a counter affidavit, asked the court to discountenance Useni’s request.