On Tuesday, 9 July, embattled Sen. Ishiaku Abbo (PDP-Adamawa) appeared before a 6-man panel set up by the Senate to investigate the assault charges levelled against him.
Abbo appeared before his colleagues at exactly 3.15 p.m stating that the matter was already before the court, hence he would not make comments that could amount to prejudice of the Court process. However, the squabble started brewing when he said that he had no business appearing and making comments about the matter anywhere. Senator Oluremi Tinubu (APC-Lagos), a member of the panel, expressed her displeasure over Abbo’s comment before the panel. She said,
“The Senate carefully selected members of this committee to hear your own side of the story which has gone viral.
“What we are doing here as a legislature is a position taken by the Senate to hear from you and others involved.
“This matter has affected the Senate as an institution and we have been mandated to investigate it.
“You can’t sit there on the other side and dictate the modalities and approach we follow as a committee.
“We are trying to protect the Senate and hear from you, but we can also suspend you because of your attitude.”
Apparently angered by her comments, he replied,
“Dear colleagues, I won’t sit here and allow this committee to threaten me with suspension.
“Is it out of place for me to say I’m not addressing you since this matter is before a court of law of competent jurisdiction?
“I came here to honour you as colleagues after receiving an SMS inviting me here.
“Just the same way I have received SMS from the police. I was arrested, detained and charged to court over this matter. Yet, I’m here out of respect for you as colleagues.
“I want you to remember that this matter is before a court of competent jurisdiction and I don’t want to be held in contempt of the Court,” he said.
After some arguments broke out, the chairman of the panel, Egwu urged all parties to remain calm. President of the Senate, Dr Ahmad Lawan set up the panel which was headed by Sen. Sam Egwu (PDP-Ebonyi) on July 3.