Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, has expressed deep anger over the Police’s summons to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Governorship candidate in Osun State, Ademola Adeleke, saying that the development was worrisome, because it had traits of a fascist government in power.
Atiku stated that it was unfortunate that Ademola Adeleke was being trailed by the Police, when Federal Agencies aided Nigeria’s former Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun, to depart Nigeria, over the weekend, despite having admitted to criminal forgery of her National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, certificate.
Atiku criticised President Muhammadu Buhari, saying that it was rather ironic that the Police were after Adeleke, when in fact Nigeria’s foremost examination body, WAEC, had certified his certificate as genuine; unlike Buhari who hired over a dozen Senior Advocates of Nigeria, SANs, to defend him in court, rather than clarify issues surrounding his school certificate.
Although Atiku did not mention Buhari’s by name, but the President’s high school certificate was a major issue during the 2015 elections.
The President was also reported to have queued up to 13 SANs, to extricate him of certificate forgery charges, in 2016.
Atiku in his statement, disclosed that he was alarmed by the summon of Adeleke by the Police, on Wednesday, barely a few days to the Osun State Governorship election.
“Let it be on record, that I completely condemn this act, which comes less than a week to the election, in which Senator Adeleke is a major participant and front-runner”, Atiku said.
“I warn both Nigerians and the international community, that democracy is on trial in Nigeria. Senator Adeleke is being victimised, and we call on all lovers of democracy, to stand up to resist this fascist attempt to steal an election.”
Atiku further revealed that attempts by the Buhari administration to manipulate the Saturday election in Osun State, started with a secret transfer of nearly N17 billion, to the cash-strapped State on the eve of the election there.
“It is obvious that these are politically motivated charges, to hamstring the expected victory of the PDP’s candidate. Coming so soon after the surreptitious payments of N16.7 billion so-called Paris Club refund, to the incumbent All Progressives Congress administration in Osun State, which was condemned by the generality of Nigerian Governors, from both the APC and the PDP, it reflects desperation on the part of the Buhari administration.
“Ironically, certificate forgery or absence of certificates, go all the way to the top in the APC-led Federal Government”, Atiku added.
“Unlike some people who have hired thirteen Senior Advocates of Nigeria, Senator Adeleke has been able to get the West African Examination Council, to certify that he indeed sat for his school leaving certificate in 1981.”
“On the contrary, Senator Adeleke has no proven case of forgery or fraud against him. Why then has the Police waited till now, to declare Senator Adeleke wanted, just three days to the election?
“This by itself should stop the Police from their malicious prosecution of Adeleke, if the rule of law were guiding this administration.
“Nigerians were witness to the fact that a Minister admitted, after being exposed, to forging her certificate. This Minister was escorted to the Airport, and allowed to board a flight to London, to escape the long hand of the law”, he stated.
Meanwhile, the PDP had earlier dismissed the Police summons to Adeleke, saying that it was an attempt to manipulate the election in favour of the ruling party, and insisting that its candidate has absolutely no question to answer, with respect to forgery of academic credentials or examination malpractices.
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