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Nigeria’s president faces new problem to election victory as opposition claims he solid diploma

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ABUJA, Nigeria — Nigeria’s most important opposition stated Thursday it can current new proof to assist its court docket problem looking for to overturn this yr’s presidential election, saying it might present the declared winner supplied faked tutorial credentials to authorities.

President Bola Tinubu solid a diploma from an American college that he offered to Nigeria’s election fee earlier than the February vote and ought to be faraway from workplace, first runner-up Atiku Abubakar and his lawyer alleged in a briefing with reporters. They cited data obtained from the college in a U.S. court docket listening to and shared with The Related Press.

Abubakar beforehand has argued Tinubu shouldn’t be president as a result of the election fee didn’t observe due course of in saying the winner and Tinubu was not certified to run, citing allegations of twin citizenship and of a prison indictment in america.

Tinubu has denied these claims. He didn’t touch upon the brand new allegation, however his spokesman denied it. “A person can’t forge the tutorial data he possesses,” Temitope Ajayi, Tinubu’s media aide, wrote on X, previously generally known as Twitter.

The problem is being intently watched by many Nigerians following a divisive election that noticed Tinubu win with lower than 50% of the votes, a primary in Nigeria’s historical past.

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Abubakar is certainly one of three candidates who’re in court docket looking for to void Tinubu’s election victory.

Kalu Kalu, Abubakar’s lawyer, stated they’re set to current “recent proof” within the case pending earlier than Nigeria’s Supreme Court docket.

“A celebration at fault can’t be allowed to benefit from the fruit of his illegality,” Kalu stated.

No presidential election in Nigeria has ever been voided.

In advancing his court docket problem, Abubakar secured an order from the U.S. District Court docket for the Northern District of Illinois directing Chicago State College, which Tinubu attended, to launch his tutorial data.

In a transcript of a deposition this week given to AP by Abubakar’s attorneys, and which has not been made out there by the court docket, Caleb Westberg, registrar of the college, confirmed the college “has the unique report of Bola Tinubu.” However he stated he couldn’t verify the authenticity of the diploma that the Nigerian chief offered to the election fee indicating he graduated in 1979.

“We’re not certified to confirm whether or not this doc (the diploma) is genuine, provided that it isn’t in our possession,” Westberg stated.

Requested to verify that the college “has no report of issuing” the diploma in query, Westberg responded, “Right.”

Alexandre de Gramont, who represented Abubakar in U.S. court docket, stated in a press release that the workforce acquired “nearly the whole lot we sought” after a “hard-fought battle to acquire the academic data … which Mr. Tinubu’s attorneys vigorously opposed at each step.”

It isn’t the primary time {that a} Nigerian chief has been accused of forgery. Muhammadu Buhari, Tinubu’s predecessor, confronted related allegations although they had been by no means confirmed to be true.

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