Umar made the disclosure when the trial of the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki resumed on Tuesday, while directing the the defence counsel to restrict the number of lawyers who would cross-examine the prosecution witness to just one.
Recall that Tinubu was brought before the tribunal in 2011 for allegedly operating foreign accounts while serving as governor of Lagos state between 1999 and 2007. He was however discharged and acquitted.
On the matter, Umar said:
“I want to say that in case of Bola Tinubu we were under serious influence, but we did what we had to do and discharged him. So we must be fair to ourselves not to delay this trial”
Noting that the conduct of the cross-examination had been untidy with the frequent change of lawyers by the defence team, he said: “the records of this tribunal show that 100 counsels have represented the defendant.
“It is certainly unreasonable that all the 100 counsel of the defence will have a bite at the cherry.
“The head counsel, Kanu Agabi should be the one to conduct the cross examination and when he is unable, he is entitled to nominate other counsels.
“A situation where different lawyers take on the cross examination at different time will not help this proceedings.
“Anything short of this, the tribunal will not allow”