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Obaseki bounces back, Oshiomhole, APC panic as Court admits certificates in evidence on forgery suit



Obaseki celebrates legal victory over APC, commends Appeal Court judgment on certificate forgery suit
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Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State bounces back in the certificate forgery suit filed by the All Progressives Congress (APC) challenging his re-election as the court admitted his certificates in evidence. The governor’s renewed confidence was being reinforced by the defence of his certificate by the University of Ibadan.

The new turn of events at the Tuesday proceedings at the court may have thrown the ousted APC national chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, and the party, into palpable phobia after Oshiomhole had boasted that there are other ways beyond the polls of removing the Edo governor from office and returning the APC to power in the state.

A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja presided by Justice Ahmed Mohammed on Tuesday admitted the original certificates of Governor Obaseki as evidence in the certificate forgery suit.

The presiding Judge, Justice Ahmed Mohammed, had ignored an objection raised by counsel to the plaintiffs in the suit of alleged certificate forgery against Governor Obaseki by the APC and Williams Edobor.

The defendants had called the first witness, Charity Aguobawekhina, to attest to their originality of the documents which were accepted by the court.

It was narrated that Governor Obaseki’s documents admitted by the court include his First School Leaving Certificate obtained in 1971, Ordinary Level Certificate obtained in 1973, and Higher School Certificate obtained in 1976; as well as the Bachelor of Arts Degree Certificate issued by the University of Ibadan in 1979 and a Master’s Degree Certificate issued to him by the Pace University in New York, the United States in 1994.

Akin Olujimi, Counsel to the plaintiffs, raised objection to the primary school certificate and original copy of the certificate from the University of Ibadan. Olujimi SAN argued that the documents were not frontloaded, insisting that all arguments in respect to the objections raised would be taken to the final written address.

Olujimi had concluded the APC’s submissions at the resumed hearing of the suit on Monday,  with the cross-examination of an expert witness, Raphael Onwuzuligbo, a retired Assistant Superintendent of Police and a forensic document examiner.

On cross-examination by counsels to Governor Obaseki, Onwuzuligbo was said to have pointed out that the logo of the University of Ibadan on the governor’s certificate seems to be compromised. The retired ASP observed that the signature of the Vice-Chancellor of the university was missing from the certificate not because the document was poorly scanned but that it was truly missing.

Olujimi had maintained that the witness evidence strengthened proof of their case against Obaseki.