Why we can’t verify Tinubu’s certificate - Chicago varsity – Newstrends
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Why we can’t verify Tinubu’s certificate – Chicago varsity

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Why we can’t verify Tinubu’s certificate – Chicago varsity

The Chicago State University (CSU) says it cannot authenticate the certificate President Bola Tinubu submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) before the February 25 presidential elections.

Counsel for CSU, Michael Hayes, disclosed this on Thursday while speaking before Judge Jeffrey Gilbert in Chicago.

He stated that the school was not in a position to authenticate Tinubu’s certificate as either fake or genuine.

This however contradicted the school’s previous assertions that it issued a certificate to Tinubu after he graduated in 1979.

Hayes, at the hearing in Chicago, which lasted several hours in suit filed by Atiku Abubakar, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), said, “Is the diploma authentic or is it a forgery? My client can’t answer yes to either of those questions.”

The lawyer maintained the school’s administrators would not be able to certify Tinubu’s certificate because they “just don’t know” where he obtained it or how.

Hayes was responding to the judge’s inquiry into the school’s ability to confirm under oath that Tinubu was issued the certificate he tendered to Nigeria’s electoral office as part of his final eligibility paperwork in June 2022.

Hayes insisted that CSU records showed Tinubu attended the school, but admitted there were several contradictions that the school’s administrators won’t be able to clarify under oath.

Those discrepancies included the June 22, 1977, date that Tinubu’s certificate carried as well as the school’s president at the time the certificate was obtained and typographical, font and header errors on the document.

Background

Tinubu on June 17, 2022 submitted a certificate to INEC that was purportedly issued in 1979 and signed by Elnora Daniel.

But Daniel only arrived at the CSU in 1998 from Hampton University, 19 years after Tinubu was said to have graduated.

She then left the school in 2008 following a financial mismanagement scandal or 14 years before June 2022 when the CSU issued yet a fresh certificate in Tinubu’s name under subpoena from a Nigerian lawyer, who had inquired about Tinubu’s education there.

The contradictions, among others, caused Atiku to file the suit to compel the CSU to produce records relating to Tinubu and make its top officials available for deposition to certify the produced records, according to the opposition leader’s lawyers.

Alexandre de Gramont, who appeared in court for Atiku, said the documents and depositions were being sought for use in the Nigerian Supreme Court, where the final battle over Tinubu’s election has headed.

Atiku has until September 20 to appeal the September 6 decision of the Court of Appeal.

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Reps move for rotational presidency, six-year single term for president, govs 

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Reps move for rotational presidency, six-year single term for president, govs 

Some members of the House of Representatives are seeking a constitutional review to provide for the rotation of executive powers among the six geopolitical zones.

Specifically, the lawmakers under the aegis of the Reform Minded Legislators are asking for a single tenure of six years for Nigeria’s President and state governors.

A bill to this effect is currently before the House of Representatives and has passed the first reading.

The federal lawmakers, about 30 of them sponsoring the reform bills, contended that it would lead to reduction in government spending, eliminate wastage, bring about efficiency in governance and national stability.

Speaking to journalists in Abuja on Monday, Co-sponsor of the reformers bills and member representing Ideato North/South Federal Constituency of Imo State, Hon. Ikenga Ugochinyere, said the electoral reform bills would be going for a second reading on the floor of the House soon.

He said the bills, if passed into law, would help reduce the cost of governance and campaigns and unite the country.

He also said it would ensure a seamless transition, continuity, uninterrupted development, justice, equity, independence of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and efficient use of state resources.

Ugochinyere said, “We are a group of reform-minded lawmakers committed towards using the instrument of lawmaking to reform Nigeria and our political process, constitutional and electoral reform has been a burning topic in Nigeria since independence from Britain in 1960.”

He added that the arrangement was in line with the realisation that the current political arrangement has some identified distortions, defects and limitations that called for urgent, focused and realistic attention, hence the initiative on political and electoral reform.

Ugochinyere said, “These bills which are 50 in numbers have gone through first reading but today we are starting with public unveiling of about six of them while the remaining will come in the weeks ahead.

“It ranges from governance, economic, security, and justice sector reforms to social bills that will target unifying our nation and ensuring long-lasting peace and national cohesion.”

The lawmakers stressed that they were cognisant of the fact that Nigeria in times past had deliberated on and accepted some of the proposals in the Bills, including the Justice Uwais electoral reforms, the Senator Ken Nnamani electoral reform committee, the Udoji civil service reform reports, the Confab reports, among others.

Against this background, the lawmakers said they are proposing: “Constitutional alteration to provide for the rotation of executive powers among the six geopolitical zones to ensure equal representation and reduce the desperation and tempo of agitation for the creation of states.

“To amend section 3 of the Constitution to provide for the recognition of the division of Nigeria into six geopolitical zones.

“To amend the Constitution to provide for a single tenure of six years for the President and Governors of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The reduction in government spending and wastage, efficiency in governance, and national stability by providing a single term of six years for the President and governors.”

The lawmakers are also proposing a constitutional amendment to create the office of two vice presidents from the southern and northern parts of Nigeria.

They lawmakers said that the first vice president should be a succession vice president, while the second vice president should be a minister in charge of the economy, and both to serve as ministers.

The lawmakers said, “Constitutional amendment to provide that the President and the 1st Vice President shall come from the same part of the country (North or South) and the 1st Vice President shall become President whenever the President becomes incapacitated, i.e., Vice President (Succession), Vice President (Administration and Economy).

“The financial autonomy and accountability of Local Government Councils by prescribing an independent Consolidated Local Government Council Account solely superintendent by Local Councils and prescribing long-term imprisonment for any misuse of Local Government funds.

“To amend section 162(5) of the 1999 Constitution to provide that where a State Government fails to remit to the Local Government Councils within its jurisdiction (or within the State), the amounts standing to the credit of that Local Government in the allocation from the Federation account, such State Government shall not be entitled to receive a future allocation from the federal government.’

On electoral reforms, the lawmakers are proposing bills to amend the relevant sections of the Electoral Act to ensure that all elections — presidential, governorship, National Assembly, state Houses of Assembly, and local governments are held on the same day.

The lawmakers are also proposing amendment to relevant sections of the Electoral Act to provide that no declaration of a winner of an election shall be done by the relevant INEC Officials until such officer has compared the results with the list of accredited voters and ensured that the results to be declared are in tandem with the list of accredited voters and the B-VAS machine or any other electronic device.

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LP chieftains ask party to account for 2023 campaign fund

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LP chieftains ask party to account for 2023 campaign fund

Stakeholders of the Labour Party (LP) in Kaduna State have called for transparency regarding party leaders’ spending of the 2023 campaign funds at the national and state levels.

This demand emerged from a meeting held by the stakeholders in Kaduna over the weekend. Present at the meeting were the state acting chairman of the party, Alhaji Isa Ciroma, acting secretary, Sani Musa Sahabi, and senatorial candidates for Kaduna South and North, Mike Auta and Alhaji Sidi Bamali, among others.

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Speaking to journalists after the meeting, Alhaji Sidi Bamali, alongside other stakeholders, praised the party’s presidential candidate, Peter Obi, for providing an account of the campaign fund under his supervision. They urged other party leaders at both state and national levels to emulate this example.

Bamali expressed concern over the apparent lack of leadership within the party’s state chapter despite having notable figures like the vice presidential candidate, Datti Baba Ahmed, and the organizing secretary at both national and state levels.

LP chieftains ask party to account for 2023 campaign fund

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2027: PDP dismisses merger talks with LP, others

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2027: PDP dismisses merger talks with LP, others

 

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) says it is not in merger talks with Labour Party or any other political party ahead of the 2027 general elections.

National Publicity Secretary of the Party, Hon. Debo Ologunagba, clarified this in a statement, in Abuja, on Wednesday.

His statement was in reaction to speculations that some discussions were on going among top opposition parties including the PDP and LP in order to unseat the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

Ologunagba said, “National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) after its 587th meeting in Abuja on Tuesday, June 4, 2024, restated for the umpteenth time that the PDP is not engaged in any merger, fusion or amalgamation talks with any other political Party or interest.

“While the PDP, as a truly people’s party, is open and welcoming to all Nigerians including our former members who left for other parties, we state that our Party remains strong and formidable, capable of winning elections in a free,fair and transparent electoral process in our country.

“The NWC acknowledges the influx of millions of Nigerians into our party in the ongoing Party Membership Drive in all the Electoral Wards across the country, which further confirms that the PDP remains the party of choice for majority of Nigerians.

“The public, teeming members of our great party, Democracy Institutions and of course the International Community should therefore disregard any report suggesting any form of merger between the PDP and any other political Party as such is not in the contemplation of our great party.”

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