In a significant development, Chicago State University (CSU) has testified in official proceedings that Nigeria’s President, Bola Tinubu, submitted a falsified degree certificate to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) during his filing for Nigeria’s presidential candidacy in June 2022. This revelation has sent shockwaves through the political landscape as it directly challenges the educational credentials of a prominent political figure.
According to a report by Peoples Gazette, representatives from the university made this revelation during a deposition that took place on Tuesday. The university officials rejected Tinubu’s academic certificate, which was the primary educational credential he presented to the electoral office.
The comprehensive transcript of this deposition is currently undergoing processing, and it promises to have far-reaching implications on the political landscape of Nigeria.
Caleb Westberg, the registrar at Chicago State University, played a pivotal role during the approximately 5.5-hour deposition. He stated unequivocally that Tinubu’s certificate, dated June 22, 1979, and presented to INEC on June 17, 2022, was not issued by the university. As a result, the administrators at CSU could not authenticate its origin.
Westberg, who has held the position of CSU’s registrar since November 2020, also disclosed that Tinubu had neither applied for nor received a replacement certificate from the university.
This testimony came about as a result of a court order granted by Federal district judge Nancy Maldonado. The court order allowed CSU administrators to provide all documents related to Tinubu to the university and undergo deposition by an adversarial legal team representing Atiku Abubakar of the People Democratic Party (PDP).
Despite attempts by Tinubu and his legal team to halt these proceedings, citing severe, irreparable harm to the Nigerian president, the university’s assertion regarding the certificate’s authenticity will likely have a profound and lasting impact on Nigeria’s population, which exceeds 200 million.
Currently, the collected records from the university, the deposition, and additional materials obtained through the U.S. legal system are being prepared for submission to the Nigeria Supreme Court. A final decision on the presidential election challenge is expected on or before December 6, 2023.
This revelation raises critical questions about the veracity of educational credentials in Nigerian politics and could have far-reaching consequences for the political future of President Tinubu.