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Aso Rock Watch: Dismissing claims against Tinubu. Two other talking points



The Presidency, last week, dismissed claims that President Bola Tinubu forged the certificate he presented to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), in order to contest the February 25 presidential election.

Within the week in review, we also tracked two other stories from the seat of power, Aso Rock villa.

1. In defense of Tinubu

On October 4, the Presidency insisted that Tinubu did not forge his certificate from Chicago State University (CSU), as Atiku Abubakar, one of his major challengers in the presidential election alleged.

The President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Temitope Ajayi, in a statement via his X (formerly Twitter) account, asserted that “In the deposition made by the Chicago State University, there is nowhere the University said the certificate presented to INEC by President Tinubu was fake. The University insisted under oath that President Tinubu graduated with honours and even at that, replacements for lost certificates are done by vendors not the University.”

The Tinubu certificate saga drives deep into the need to perfect the country’s electoral system, beginning with pre-election issues, in order to avoid national, and international embarrassments.

It further depicts how politics remains a game of interest as Tinubu, and Atiku had on several occasions teamed up to pursue the same goals, but now at loggerheads in pursuance of their now different objectives.

On the flip side, the push back from the presidency represents one of the constant battles it would have to fight in ensuring legitimacy for the new administration.

For sure, the final outcomes from Atiku’s legal tussles, and the many others, will set judicial precedents and further deepen the country’s democratic institutions.

Two other talking points

2. Shettima’s advice to NEDC

The Vice President, Kashim Shettima, on October 4, charged the North-East Development Commission (NEDC), to prioritise investments in legacy projects for the development of North-East region.

READ ALSO:ASO ROCK WATCH: Enduring hardship at independence. One other talking point

Shettima made the charge when he spoke to the board and management of the NEDC at the State House, Abuja.
“I will ask the board and management to embark on legacy projects; projects that will stand the test of time,” he said.

Shettima’s charge serves as a reminder for the NEDC to initiate impactful, yet enduring projects underpinned by accountability, and transparency.

Indeed, it represents a call for the board and management of the commission to, not only act appropriately, but do better than similar agencies, like the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), that had become notorious for corruption and wasteful projects.

3. Tinubu’s pledge to reward teachers

On October 5, Tinubu vowed that his administration would ensure that teachers get rewarded duly.

Tinubu made the pledge in his keynote address titled: “Teacher Appreciation: Nurturing Minds, Changing Lives,” during the 2023 World Teachers’ Day commemoration in Abuja.

The President, who was represented by Shettima, said: “It is my promise that we will work tirelessly to build a society where the teacher’s reward begins to manifest here on earth.”

Tinubu’s vow may have shown his deep appreciation of the contributions of Nigerian teachers to nation-building. It, therefore, calls attention to the urgent need to mitigate the plight of this breed of professionals who are hardly acknowledged.

If President’s vow is not to remain hollow, he would have to match words with workable actions.

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