A former Chief of Staff, Lt. General Ipoola Alani Akinrinade has hammered critics of President Muhammadu Buhari over the West African School Certificate Examination certificate, WACE, the president said was with the Nigerian Army.
He, however, blamed the military for its poor record keeping.
Worried by how Nigerians abuse the president over his failure to present his WAEC certificate to INEC, Akinrinade blamed the Nigeria’s recording system.
According to him, the certificate saga was an insult to the Nigerian Army, noting that back in the days in the forces, ‘there were no cutting corners”.
And that was how it was till Buhari’s time.
“The most annoying one is the case about Buhari not having a Certificate,” he said, adding it is an insult to the Armed Forces.
“If they are so embedded in the system and they have lost their souls, then they can go ahead and join everybody else in castigating a General of Buhari’s calibre.”
Blaming the civilians, too, the former COS said it was when civilians took over from the Army that admission into the force became less transparent.
He cited Course Five around 1964 which nobody could take without a School Certificate, and how Buhari attended the Mons (Officer Cadet School in Aldershot in England) and the Staff College.
“I don’t want to think they have an idea what they teach in those places,” he said.
He described the critics as pretenders.
“You send a man to America for one and a half years in a Military School—Do they think he just went there to learn how to fire a rifle ?”
He also said he doesn’t know where his original Certificate is because we gave the original to the Military Board.
“They took it from us when we applied to join the Army.”
And that was 50 years ago.