The ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, and its presidential candidate Bola Tinubu, have maintained a troubling silence over the latter’s school certificates scandal, which in fact has possible disqualification and prosecution for perjury as some of its consequences.
Despite the gravity of the scandal, an undaunted Tinubu says he is still searching for his running mate when he spoke at the presentation of “Mr Speaker”, a book in honour of Femi Gbajabiamila, speaker of the House of Representatives in Abuja.
The former Lagos State governor has been in the news since the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) published particulars of 2023 candidates.
In the INEC Form CF001 submitted on June 17, 2022, Tinubu did not provide details of his primary and secondary schools as the spaces were left blank. He also did not attach copies of his certificates, which he stated in an affidavit, had been stolen. He purported to say that he did not attend primary and secondary schools, which contradicts the information he had once given to the election body while running for governor in 1999.
The scandal has actually set the social media on fire, with many saying that it is either the APC flag-bearer is intentionally hiding some details because it would reveal his real age and originaly names or he has none at all.
A civil society group, Center for Reform and Pubic Advocacy, had written the Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba Alkali, demanding the arrest and prosecution of Tinubu within 48 hours over alleged perjury.
But speaking in Abuja during an event to mark the 60 birthday of Gbajabiamila, an unpertubed Tinubu insisted that the search for his running mate was ongoing.
At the Gbajabiamila event, Tinubu lauded the working relationship between the celebrant and his deputy, Hon Ahmed Wase, saying he needed to learn from them.
He said: “Femi with your determination, grit, you are a contributor to our democratic growth, thank you. You have character. You are a great mentor and you are doing a good job charting a path to success. You’ve done a good job and I say thank you, thank you.
“What you did during my primary is a story for another day. I’ve spent more time, too many times and people might be bored, they might be envious too, they might be jealous. I won landslide, I thank you.
“I could see his deputy (Wase) sitting down there too, you are a very good symbols of unity, dependability, and honesty, thank you. Thank you for both of you. You’ve not rocked the boat. I will need to learn from both of you, how you made the pair work because I’m still searching for my running mate.”
As at the time of filing this report, the APC had yet to break its silence on the certificate scandal that has engulfed its presidential flagbearer for the 2023 general election