The Centre for Human Rights and Social Justice (CHRSJ) has called on the Minister of Defence, Monsur Dan-Ali and the Nigeria Army top brass to bring out the controversial West African School Certificate (WASCE) of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Buhari, a former military head of state and retired major general had before the elections, insisted that his controversial original Certificate was in the custody of the Nigeria Army.
His claim was refuted by the Army, further fueling speculations that the man, who later went on to win the historic presidential elections, lacked the requisite educational qualifications to aspire to the highest office in the land.
Buhari’s victory at the polls somewhat ended the controversy surrounding his academic qualifications until the newly appointed defence minister resurrected its ghost last Friday.
Dan-Ali, a retired Brigadier General, had on the first day of his assumption of office as the new defence minister, lambasted the ministry staff for choosing job security over speaking the truth to authority.
He said, “Where was your integrity when your own Chief of Army Staff stood up and said his Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces had no WAEC certificate. How?
“Please, let us be sincere with ourselves because (on) that very day, you should have stood up and said ‘no’; but because you were there, you could not. If you leave the job, is that the end of your life? If you leave the job, there are other ways, better ways (through which) God can bless your life”.
Reacting to the statement, the rights group gave President Buhari seven (7) days ultimatum to order the army authorities as their Commander-in-Chief, to release his original Senior School Certificate, which he used for enlistment into the Army, saying failure to do so at the expiration of the ultimatum would amount to “blatant lie of the highest order from the acclaimed incorruptible President Buhari”.
In a statement issued on Sunday and signed by the CHRSJ’s Executive Chairman, Comrade Adeniyi Alimi Sulaiman, he said, “Following the recent statement credited to the new Defence Minister, Monsur Dan-Ali over disappearance of the purported original Secondary School Certificate of General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) in the custody of Nigeria Army, which General Buhari claimed to be with the Country’s Military authority, prior to the 2015 presidential election.
“General Buhari has become elected President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria now and he is the Commander-in-Chief of Armed Forces, no Military authority will have temerity to keep his Military Service file now and he should not hesitate to order them to bring out his (Buhari) original controversial Secondary School Certificate now within seven (7) days for doubting Thomas to see.
“We believe that if you are preaching equity, you must come with clean hands. Failure to bring the Certificate out within the stipulated time would tantamount to the country being governed by the un-certificated President and former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Kenneth Minimah will be vindicated for saying the truth that the controversial Buhari’s certificate was not with the authority of the Nigeria Army then and new Defence Minister, Monsur Dan-Ali, will be disappointed”.
Mr. Sulaiman, therefore, maintained that the group would not hesitate to write the International Communities as being empowered by the Freedom of Information Act, to prevail on the authority of the Nigeria Army to bring out the controversial original Secondary School Certificate of Mr. President, explaining that the human rights group would not allow the Nigeria Army and President Muhammadu Buhari to lay down bad precedent in our democratic system.
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