Deacon Elijah Afolabi, a prominent member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and an elder statesman hailing from Osun State, has urged retired generals, critical stakeholders, and elder statesmen in Nigeria to come forward and express their opinions on the recent revelations regarding the academic records of Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the President of Nigeria and presidential candidate for the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the February 25th election.
In a statement issued on Monday, September 25, 2023, Afolabi emphasized the urgent need for the intervention of respected elders, statesmen, and retired generals who played pivotal roles in preserving Nigeria’s unity. He called upon them to provide clear and decisive statements on the ongoing forgery allegations surrounding Tinubu’s academic records.
Afolabi’s statement was prompted by the ongoing legal actions initiated by the PDP and its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, in the United States District Court of Illinois, seeking the release of all of Bola Tinubu’s academic records from the Chicago State University.
“To safeguard Nigeria from those intent on draining her vitality, our elder statesmen and political leaders must make a resolute declaration at this juncture, particularly concerning the cases before the District Court of Illinois, USA.”
Afolabi expressed his dismay at the situation where the President of Nigeria is contesting the release of his academic records, raising concerns about their authenticity. He also pointed out that the transparency of the court proceedings in the USA has shed light on serious flaws within Nigeria’s judicial system.
“Our judiciary’s credibility is eroding, and the attempts to obscure the truth surrounding events at CSU in distant Chicago, United States, have become a national disgrace. Urgent declarations are needed to restore confidence in our democracy, and these declarations must come from our respected elders and statesmen.”
Afolabi stressed the importance of sustaining democracy in Nigeria and avoiding any military intervention, emphasizing that Nigeria’s interests surpass those of any individual. He noted that the certificate forgery issue is not new to Nigerians and has been an ongoing matter since 1999 when Festus Keyamo (SAN) and Chief Gani Fawehinmi brought it to court.
He criticized the APC, stating that its efforts to conceal the scandal had left many Nigerians suspecting hidden agendas.
“It is now evident that one cannot escape the consequences of their actions, regardless of the level of craftiness and cover-up. Truth, like water, will find its level. We must rise to safeguard our country, and our actions at this moment will be recorded by posterity. We are either for Nigeria or against Nigeria.”
Deacon Elijah Afolabi, writing from Osun State, Nigeria, delivered this message.