Another Presidential candidate has claimed his academic credentials are with the Nigerian Military.
Accroding to the constitution, candidates for elective positions in the country are duty-bound to submit certain documents, including their academic credentials, to the Independent National Electoral Commission, (INEC).
This is coming days after President Muhammadu Buhari made similar claims while filling his party’s presidential form.
The president’s claim first came to limelight when he submitted his 2015 presidential form. Calls on the military, then, to release Buhari’s credentials fell in deaf ears and was seen as a move to frustrate the then opposition presidential candidate.
What shocked most Nigerians this week was the claim by the president that the military was still in possession of his credentials even though he is now in control of Army as the Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces.
In a recent discovery, Hamza Al-Mustapha, the presidential candidate of Peoples Party of Nigeria (PPN), has also been reported to have made similar claims while filling his own document.
Mr Al-Mustapha, a retired major general like Mr Buhari stated in his documents that the military has “refused” to release his academic certificates, despite court orders asking them to do so.
Al-Mustapha, the chief security officer to Sani Abacha, late military dictator, indicated that he attended Hausari Primary School, from 1967 to 1974; Government Secondary School, Nguru, YBS, from 1974 to 1979; and Nigeria Defence Academy, from 1980 to 1983.
“I was a victim of persecution for 15 years over deliberate trump of charges. I was, however, exonerated and freed of the wanton charges vide court of appeal ruling on 12 July, 2013,” TheCable quoted him as saying.
“My entire personal documents including my certificates and awards were taken by the then government in 1998.
“Formal complaints were registered before high court of Lagos (2000 – 2001) and federal high court, Lagos division, (2004 – 2007) but government refused to obey court orders till today.
“However, Nigeria army (my employer – 1983 – 2013) is in custody of the certificates this application is asking of.”
While the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has advised the president to present his educational qualifications to INEC or apologize to Nigerians, NGPOLITICS reports that the electoral body has charged critics who feel the information provided by presidential candidates are wrong to seek a legal redress.