Tinubu’s Certificates Saga: Atiku Admits Gani Fawehinmi’s Inspiration

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  • Says late Human and Civil Rights activist can now rest in peace
  • Seeks collaboration with Obi, Kwankwaso, well-meaning Nigerians

Almost twenty four years after the late Chief Gani Fawehinmi dragged President Bola Ahmed Tinubu in 1999 over allegations of certificate forgery, former Vice President and Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has paid glowing tributes to the Human and Civil Rights lawyer as the great source of inspiration in his current political pursuit for the soul of Nigeria.

Atiku said the late social critic and publisher, who held the traditional chieftaincy title of the Lamofin of Ondo, inspired him to make inquiries about the educational certificate being paraded by President Tinubu through the lawsuit filed to access his academic records at the Chicago State University (CSU).

The now released documents are meant to back Atiku and PDP’s allegation of forgery which was among the prayers dismissed by the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT) ruling on September 6, 2023, that upheld Tinubu’s victory at the February 25 presidential poll.

Speaking at a press conference in Abuja on Thursday, Atiku stated that the late Senior lawyer can now rest in peace as the fight he started over 23 years ago has finally come to fruition concerning allegations that Tinubu lied under oath in claiming to have attended Government College Ibadan and Chicago State University.

According to the PDP Standard bearer, “Now, he (Fawehinmi) can truly rest in peace in the assurance that what he started about 23 years ago has come to fruition. Gani’s vindication today gives credence to the saying that no matter how fast a lie runs, the truth will someday overtake it.”

The former Vice President, who appreciated all the lawyers involved in the case, said; “I should thank the lawyers, both in Nigeria and in the United States who have assisted us in bringing clarity and definitive answers to these issues that appear to have defied our institutions for nearly quarter of a century.”

However, he pointedly chided the nation’s security agencies and institutions, saying if they were serious and diligent in performing their statutory roles, “it should not have taken weeks or months for security agencies to verify the certificates of candidates who present themselves for higher office.”

In giving credence to David Hundeyin and other journalists for “stepping in when other arms of government failed” and becoming a source of inspiration to many young Nigerians, the Wazirin Adamawa also appreciated Nigerians and citizenship journalists who continued to speak on the issue on social media in a bid to keep leaders accountable.

He also acknowledged their actions as giving him the hope “that we have worthy partners in the struggle to claim the country we call our own”.

On the controversy surrounding President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s alleged forgery of his certificate from Chicago State University, Atiku lamented that the issue has put the reputation of Nigeria at stake, saying; “The reputation of our country is at stake. That affects everyone, Nigerians everywhere, wherever they may be in the world. The reputation of Nigeria is at stake. I am a Democrat by conviction and a citizen of a country that I love.

Going forward, the former Vice President urged the Labour Party (LP)’s presidential flag bearer, Peter Obi, and NNPP’s Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, as well as every other political and religious leader, and all who love the country to join him “in this campaign to ensure propriety, accountability and the basic principles of justice, morality, and uprightness in our country and in our government. This is a task for each and every one of us.”

“This quest is not for or about Atiku Abubakar, but it is a quest for the enthronement of truth, morality, justice, and accountability in our public affairs,” he said.

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