The current alleged certificate saga involving governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo state may further attest to the age long rots in Nigeria University and other educational system in the country.
In the last few days, concerned individuals and Authorities have been raising dust in an attempt to exonerate or get more clarifications on the weighty issue on ground.
Some of the questions in the public domain are;
•>Why should controversy over Obaseki attending UI arise in the first place.
•> Why the governor has different and conflicting copies of his certificate from the institution, why he swore an affidavit saying he graduated in 1976 when his certificate reads 1979
•> How Obaseki managed to sit for five subjects at the Advanced Level when independent checks have shown that students were only allowed to sit for four subjects.
•> Why his UI degree certificate is different from the certificates of other UI alumni who graduated at the same time as the governor.
This among other questions been raised particularly by some public commentators.
The management of the University of Ibadan, UI, has confirmed that Obaseki graduated from the institution.
Olubunmi Faluyi, Registrar of the university, disclosed that the governor attended and graduated from the institution in a statement, yesterday.
“Mr Obaseki, the Governor of Edo State graduated from the University of Ibadan, where he studied Classics,” the statement read.
“Obaseki gained admission to the University in 1976 and graduated in 1979 with a Second Class Honours, Lower Division. Records of his admission and graduation are intact in the archives of the university.”
President of UI Alumni Association Worldwide, Professor Elsie Adewoye, spoke in like manner and wondered why a controversy over Obaseki attending UI should arise in the first place.
Disclosing that Obaseki had SI:19512 as matriculation number, Adewoye stated that records of Obaseki’s admission and graduation were intact in the university’s archives, stressing that ‘’this formed the basis of his unanimous selection by the Alumni Association to deliver the 2018 Alumni Lecture held on 3rd of August, 2018.”
A suit was filed against Obaseki over allegation of certificate forgery. The governor dismissed the suit.
On Tuesday, Oshiomhole asked the party’s screening committee to investigate the allegation.
“Someone should approach the UI and end this matter once and for all. If the certificate Obaseki parades is that of the UI, find out how did he pass senate screening of those days? I’m aware that in those days when this man never dreamt of becoming a governor, every student, no matter your status or your family name, must pass the screening.
“It is done every third term at the UNN (University of Nigeria Nsukka), then we ran terminal, not semester programme. The final screening was in the third year, before you go in for your final year.
“How come the UI allowed him then? Did he do a remedial, which was not unlikely? These are questions. Many came in, especially in education and linguistics, did remedial for one year and if the result was good, gained direct entry and graduated three years after,” he said.
UI dodged questions on Obaseki’s credentials – Oshioke
Meanwhile, a chieftain of the party, Victor Oshioke, said the statement from the University of Ibadan did not answer the questions raised by those querying the academic credentials of Obaseki.
He said: “As far as I know, nobody has said that Obaseki is not an alumnus of UI. What I have heard echoed by a lot of people recently, is that the O/Level grades of Obaseki in the public domain does not qualify him to be admitted into the University of Ibadan for a degree course.
“Also, some commentators have argued that the documents he attached to his expression of interest form in 2016 are different from those he attached to his 2020 form. It has also been argued that his UI degree certificate is different from the certificates of other UI alumni who graduated at the same time as the governor. The fundamental issue here is not whether Obaseki attended the University of Ibadan or not, but about discrepancies in the information submitted at different times by Godwin Obaseki about his academic history and credentials. You can recall the Bayelsa catastrophe that all Edo APC members are trying to avoid was essentially about discrepancies in the names ascribed to the deputy governorship candidate at different times.
“So I think it is Obaseki that has a lot of reconciliation to do about his true academic history. The clarification made by the management of the University of Ibadan does not, in my opinion, clear the various shades of doubt that has been raised recently by numerous concerned Nigerians about Godwin Obaseki’s academic credentials”
Similarly, a University don, Prof. Idemudia Oviosun challenged Obaseki to offer clarifications on the alleged inconsistencies.
Idemudia said: “I have studied copies of the said certificates making the rounds on the internet and whether or not Obaseki graduated from the University of Ibadan. Answers must be provided on why the governor has different and conflicting copies of his certificate from the institution, why he swore an affidavit saying he graduated in 1976 when his certificate read 1979, and how he managed to sit for five subjects at the Advanced Level when independent checks have shown that students were only allowed to sit for four subjects.