Justice Musa Kurya of the Federal High Court in Jos on Tuesday convicted Mr Ibrahim Hassan, a serving lawmaker in the Plateau State House of Assembly in a case of certificate forgery.
The sacked APC lawmaker, who represented Jos North in the Plateau State House of Assembly, was dragged to court in 2015 by his opponent, Abdul Nasir Saleh, for allegedly forging the diploma certificate in Business Administration, which he tendered before the Independent National Electoral Commission.
During the trial, the Registrar of the University of Jos, Monday Danje, had testified against the lawmaker and said the certificate was not issued by the university as claimed by Baba Hassan.
Ruling on the case on Tuesday, Justice Kurya said there was no proof that the diploma certificate submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission by Hassan was genuinely obtained from the University of Jos.
Kurya said based on direct and oral evidence submitted by the registrar before the court, the certificate presented by the embattled lawmaker to the INEC in 2015 was not obtained from the said institution, adding that the evidence given by the registrar “is true and uncontroversial.”
The judge said, “I wonder (how) a person whose diploma certificate is proved to have been forged (will be) sitting and making laws. I wonder the laws that he will make for the development of his constituency and by extension, the state as a whole.
In his judgement, the judge issued, “an order disqualifying the first defendant as the candidate of the second defendant (APC) for election to the Plateau State House of Assembly in respect of Jos North-North Constituency of Plateau State held on the 11th April, 2015 on the ground of violation of Section 31 (5) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) and non fulfilment of the constitutional requirement to conduct the said election.
“An order directing the third defendant (INEC) to accept and recognise forthwith the name of the plaintiff as the legitimate candidate of the 2nd defendant for the 2015 elections into the state House of Assembly for Jos North-North Constituency in Plateau State.
The judge further ruled that all the salaries and allowances collected by the lawmaker should be paid back to the Plateau State Government.

Source: Punch

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