The Presidential Election Petition Court in Abuja admitted as exhibits President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s educational documents from Chicago State University, as he formally opened his defence in a petition filed against his election by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate, Abubakar Atiku.
The admission letter supplied to Tinubu by the famed institution was among the educational credentials tendered to demonstrate his attendance and graduation at the American University.
President Tinubu also tendered his US Visa documents through his lead counsel, Chief Wole Olanipekun, indicating that he has visited the United States of America (USA) multiple times without incident between 2011 and 2021.
Tinubu, who presented papers to refute the criminal charges in the petition against him, also made accessible to the court the paperwork from the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) that cleared him for the travels to the United States.
The court also admitted as exhibits the United States of America’s embassy letter dated April 4, 2003, which is a response to a letter from the Nigerian Police dated February 3, 2003, which declared that the embassy had no criminal records of Tinubu in the United States.
The documents were permitted despite the PDP and the former Vice President raising strong objections to their inclusion.
The first and third respondents to the petition, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the All Progressives Congress (APC), raised no challenges to the admission of any of the papers.
The court also approved the originating summons of a petition filed at the Supreme Court by the attorneys general of Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Edo, and Sokoto contesting Tinubu’s educational qualifications to run for president in 2023.
Newspaper articles about many lawsuits filed against Tinubu by other groups were also accepted.
The next hearing on the petition has been postponed until July 5 by the court’s presiding justice, Justice Haruna Simon Tsammani.