Age, certificate forgers can’t move Nigeria forward – Peter Obi

The Labour Party presidential candidate (LP) in the February 25 election, Peter Obi, has said that Nigerian leaders who falsified their certificate and age would not achieve great things for the country.

Obi said this on Monday, October 2, while speaking on Arise TV’s ‘Nigeria @63: The State of Nation programme,’ noting that leaders who manipulated their academic records before their election into office lived a falsified life.

He said presenting a true certificate is an issue of honour, integrity and the foundation on which a society is built.  

The former Anambra state governor also insisted that he and his political party will continue to challenge the electoral process through which President Bola Ahmed Tinubu emerged as the winner.

“We are at the point where we are challenging the process. These are part of what makes a nation. The process through which people come into office or assume anything is far more fundamental than what they do thereafter. It is important that people come in through the right door and not jump in through the window. So, we are challenging the process, and that has to come to a logical end before any other thing. 

“On the issue of qualifications, I never said anything with regard to improving the degrees or doing this… the issue of qualification is the issue of leaders making statements doing things that are honest and truthful. This is an issue of honour and integrity, and it is the foundation on which you build the society.”

He insisted that people parading certificate forgery lived a falsified life and were not fit to take any leadership position in Nigeria.

“There is no way people can do this and be able to do the right things. Because that means they are living a falsified life. And that is not good, morally, and the sign should be given to society.

“There are so many great people in the world who did not go to school. I can say that the greatest president in America is Abraham Lincoln. He did not go to a formal school because, in fact, he came from an extremely poor family. His education is by borrowing books and others.”

The ICIR had, on September 6, reported that the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT) tribunal upheld the election of President Bola Tinubu and dismissed Atiku, Obi, and the Allied People’s Movement (APM) petitions against his victory.

The five-man panel of justices said the petitions filed against Tinubu by the parties were without merit.

“Having concluded and decided that all three petitions are all devoid of merit, the petitions are hereby dismissed,” the panel announced.

In his petition before the tribunal, Obi had stated that there was rigging in 11 states, and he promised to prove it based on the uploaded results on INEC’s server.

He further claimed that Tinubu “was not duly elected by a majority of the lawful votes cast at the time of the election”.

Similarly, the Peoples’ Democratic Party and its candidate, Abubakar Atiku, challenged the process that brought Tinubu in, but the PEPC dismissed the suit.

Meanwhile, the two presidential candidates, Atiku and Obi, have filed appeals at the Supreme Court, seeking the nullification of the PEPT’s judgment.

The notice of appeal filed by Atiku’s lead counsel, Chris Uche, urged the apex court to set aside the tribunal’s ruling, predicating his argument on 35 grounds.

The ICIR reports that there have been issues over Tinubu’s academic records, with Atiku securing the court’s judgment in the United States that the President’s school, Chicago State University, release his academic records to the litigant.

Usman Mustapha is a solution journalist with International Centre for Investigative Reporting. You can easily reach him via: [email protected]. He tweets @UsmanMustapha_M

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