My credentials not forged — Sacked deputy gov-elect insists

ex-Bayelsa State deputy governor-elect, Senator Biobarakuma Degi- Eremienyo
ex-Bayelsa State deputy governor-elect, Senator Biobarakuma Degi- Eremienyo

A week after the Supreme Court declared his certificate as fake, embattled ex-Bayelsa State deputy governor-elect, Senator Biobarakuma Degi- Eremienyo, has said that all his educational qualifications presented to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) were genuinely obtained from Nigerian institutions.

Eremienyo, who briefed journalists in Abuja yesterday, said the institutions are all still in existence for his claims to be verified.

A five-member panel of justices of the apex court led by Justice Mary Odili, in a unanimous judgment last Thursday, held that Degi-Eremienyo presented a forged certificate to INEC. It was based on the verdict that the PDP candidate, Senator Duoye Diri and his deputy, Senator Lawrence Ewhruojakpo were sworn in.

Eremienyo said, “This was clearly a desperate and calculated attempt not just to grab power through the judicial process but equally to tarnish my good image and disrepute me on completely false and unproven allegations. Let me say in strong terms, I condemn all forms of forgery, impersonation or criminality by the political class and I have never been associated with that.

“Owing to the advice of counsel to confront the facts, we have filed a counter-affidavit specifically denying all the allegations of impersonation and presenting false information to INEC.

“I equally applied to the court out of abundance of transparency to summon the issuing authorities of these certificates by way of subpoena to clarify the allegations about the genuineness of the certificates I presented to INEC and that oral evidence be allowed in the proceedings giving room for the true owners as professed by the PDP to come forth to deny my claims to these documents.

“Surprisingly, the PDP opposes this application and the trial court judge refused same that it was simply a ploy to delay the trial.”

Eremienyo, who is also a serving senator at the 9th Assembly, added that the business of a court of law and justice is to find out the truth of every allegation or matter before it to meet the justice of the case.

He added that the PDP and the trial court maintained that the allegation against him were not that of forgery even when they asserted that the nature of allegations in their affidavit depositions were criminal allegations amounting to perjury and forgery after which the trial court made specific findings that the case against him was not a case of forgery on page 52 of the judgement.

He added that without giving him a voice in the matter at hand, it would be tragically unfair to begin to discredit his reputation which he had built over the years.

He called on the police to launch criminal investigation as regards to his names and academic certificates.

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