Chicago State University releases Tinubu’s records to Atiku

L-R: President Bola Tinubu and former Vice President Atiku Abubakar. FILE PHOTO

By Gideon Maxwell

Chicago State University (CSU) United States of America has released the academic records of President Bola Tinubu to former Vice President Atiku Abubakar after he compelled the school to do so through legal means.

The documents were released to Atiku on Monday, October 2, 2023, by CSU, complying with the order of a United States District Court in the Northern District of Illinois.

Earlier, the President through its lawyers had appealed against the release of his academic records to Atiku but his objection was dismissed by a US district judge.

In his ruling, the judge said: “For the foregoing reasons, the court overrules President Tinubu’s objections to Magistrate Judge Gilbert’s recommended ruling, and therefore, adopts the ruling in full.

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“Mr Atiku’s Application is, therefore, granted. In light of the pending Supreme Court of Nigeria deadline, represented to the court as October 5, 2023, and based on CSU’s representations that it is ready to comply with the discovery requests and produce a witness, the court sets an expedited schedule for completion of discovery.

“Respondent CSU is directed to produce all relevant and non-privileged documents in response to Requests for Production Nos. The Rule 30(b)(6) deposition of CSU’s corporate designee must be completed by 5:00 p.m. CDT on Tuesday, October 3, 2023. Given the October 5, 2023, filing deadline before the Supreme Court of Nigeria, the court will not extend or modify these deadlines.”

In the CSU documents, which went viral late Monday night, the institution responded to Atiku’s four requests.

Responding to Atiku’s request for “A true and correct copy of any diploma issued by CSU in 1979 to Mr Tinubu,” the US varsity said: “CSU does not, in the ordinary course, keep copies of student diplomas, and after the diligent search cannot locate a copy of the original diploma it prepared for Mr Tinubu in 1979, hence, has no documents responsive to this request.”

Atiku had applied to have copies of Tinubu’s academic records to tender in arguing his case further in pursuit of his appeal at the Supreme Court where he is challenging Tinubu’s victory in the February 25 presidential election, against Tinubu’s legal team’s argument that the documents would be of no use at the Supreme Court.

Atiku, the presidential candidate of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Nigeria’s 25 February election, had raised allegations of forgery against Tinubu, the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate who was declared as the winner of the presidential election.

He requested the documents to back his allegation of forgery of the CSU certificate against Tinubu.

The allegation of forgery was one of those dismissed by Nigeria’s presidential election court in the suit Atiku filed to challenge the election of Tinubu.