Atiku Questions Authenticity of Tinubu’s 1979 University Certificate Signatures
In a stunning revelation, former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar has cast doubt on the authenticity of Bola Tinubu’s 1979 Chicago State University (CSU) certificate, claiming that the signatures on it could not have been genuine. Atiku alleges that Elnora Daniel and Niva Lubin, whose names appear on the certificate, were not part of CSU when Tinubu graduated in 1979.
Mr. Abubakar, who was the first runner-up in the February 25 presidential poll, is using this document to challenge Mr. Tinubu’s eligibility to hold the office of Nigeria’s president. The controversy surrounding Tinubu’s CSU records has been a focal point in Nigerian politics.
Atiku argued that it was impossible for Elnora Daniel and Niva Lubin to have signed Bola Tinubu’s 1979 CSU certificate because they didn’t start working at the institution until 1998 and 1996, respectively. He presented his case before the U.S. Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
The former Vice-President pointed out glaring inconsistencies between the certificate Tinubu submitted to Nigeria’s electoral body, INEC, dated June 22, 1979, and another certificate given to Nigerian lawyer Mike Enahoro-Ebah in response to a subpoena, dated June 27, 1979. He claimed that the June 22 diploma had a different font, seal, and lacked a grammatical error present in the June 27 diploma. Additionally, the June 22 diploma had only two signatures instead of three.
Angela Liu, counsel for Mr. Abubakar, raised questions about the authenticity of the signatures. She noted that the certificate listed Dr. Daniel as President of CSU, even though she didn’t begin working there until 1998. Similarly, the second signature purported to be that of Dr. Niva Lubin, whose legal name is Niva Lubin-Johnson, but it was listed as Niva Lubin on Tinubu’s certificate. Ms. Lubin-Johnson had joined the CSU board in 1996.
Peoples Gazette’s investigation confirmed that both Dr. Daniel and Dr. Lubin joined CSU after Tinubu graduated, and it was customary for the incumbent president and board chair to sign certificates at the time of request. These revelations raised doubts about the authenticity of the certificate, suggesting potential forgery.
Ms. Liu asserted that the June 22 diploma displayed signs of forgery, including illegible signatures and grammatical errors. She also highlighted that both Dr. Daniel and Dr. Lubin had left CSU by 2008 and 2001, respectively, despite claims that they signed the certificate.
In an attempt to delay the release of his school records, Tinubu pleaded with Judge Nancy Maldonado, citing severe and irreparable damage to his life. This was a last-ditch effort to prevent the order from being enforced. Atiku intends to use this document in his case at the Supreme Court of Nigeria to prove that Tinubu committed perjury and is ineligible to serve as the nation’s president.
The authenticity of Tinubu’s 1979 CSU certificate remains a contentious issue that could have significant implications for Nigerian politics.