Court sacks Plateau lawmaker for certificate forgery

Plateau State House of Assembly Photo Credit: m.thenigerianvoice.com

A Federal High Court in Jos has sacked a Plateau State lawmaker, Ibrahim Hassan, for forging his academic certificate.

The lawmaker had claimed to have obtained a business administration diploma from the University of Jos.

PREMIUM TIMES reported how the registrar of University of Jos , Moday Danje, disowned the certificate as fake.

The sacked lawmaker, who is currently representing Jos North-North in the Plateau state House of Assembly, was taken to court in 2015 by Abdul Saleh.

Mr Saleh contested party primary with the sacked lawmaker on the platform of All Progressive Congress in 2015, but lost.

The judge, Musa Kurya, on Tuesday said there was no proof that the diploma submitted to INEC by Mr Hassan was genuinely obtained from the University of Jos.

Mr Kurya said based on direct and oral evidence submitted by the registrar of the school to the court, it was true that the certificate presented by the embattled lawmaker to INEC in 2015 was not authentic.

The judge said the evidence given by the registrar “is true and uncontroversial.”

“I wonder (why) a person whose diploma certificate is proved to have been forged (is) sitting and making law,” he said. “I wonder the laws that he will make for the development of his constituency and by extension, the state as a whole.”

Justice Kurya granted all the prayers sought by Mr Saleh, and ruled that Mr Hassan was never qualified to seek office as a lawmaker.

As a result, he ordered that Mr Saleh who came second in the primary be sworn in as replacement for the sacked lawmaker.

He also awarded N5 million as legal fees and N25 million as general damages against the ousted lawmaker.

Mr Kurya ruled that others certificates obtained by the accused using the fake diploma cannot stand.

“You can’t build something out of nothing,” he ruled.

Justice Kurya called on the Department of State Security Services (DSS), the Economic and Financial Crime Commission(EFCC), the Independent National Electoral Commission ( INEC) and the State House of Assembly to take note of the judgement.

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