Governor Abubakar Sani Bello of Niger State did not submit his educational credentials to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) while filling the form EC 9 as required by the electoral act 2022, and INEC guidelines for nomination of candidates for election. Governor Bello is serving two terms of 4 years each as Governor of Niger State, since 2015 and now running for Senate to represent Niger north senatorial district in the 2023 general elections.
Page 4 of his form EC 9 where schools attended and educational qualifications with dates are to be filled, Governor Sani Bello only filled his Primary School information as FSLC with year as 1979 and Secondary school as Nigeria Military school with 1985 as year, the space provided for Higher education was left blank as against 2019 where he filled University of Maiduguri 1991 and attached 1993 and NYSC certificate of 1992, meaning he served a year before graduation against the NYSC establishment act.
Also, in 2019, Governor Sani Bello filled his Secondary Education as Nigeria Military school and 1985 as year of graduation in the form but attached a 1986 Nigerian Military School Results.
This contradictions were litigated from the electoral tribunal in Niger State up until Supreme Court where the courts dismissed the case for lack of sufficient prove, the court of appeal specifically said, the 180 days limits for the tribunal has expired it would have referred it back for retrial. All the certificates acclaimed issuing bodies; University of Maiduguri and the National youth service corp subpoenaed during the trial to testify refused to appear as witnesses.
Section 65 of the 1999 Constitution provides a school certificate or equivalent as the minimum qualification for election into the National Assembly.
65(2) “A person shall be qualified for election under subsection (1) of this section if:
“(a) he has been educated up to at least School Certificate level or its equivalent.”
Section 318 interpreted school certificate as follow.
“School Certificate or its equivalent” means
(a) a Secondary School Certificate or its equivalent, or Grade II Teacher’s Certificate, the City and Guilds Certificate; or
(b) education up to Secondary School Certificate level; or
(c) Primary Six School Leaving Certificate or its equivalent and –
(i) service in the public or private sector in the Federation in any capacity acceptable to the Independent National Electoral Commission for a minimum of ten years, and
(ii) attendance at courses and training in such institutions as may be acceptable to the Independent National Electoral Commission for periods totalling up to a minimum of one year, and
(iii) the ability to read, write, understand and communicate in the English language to the satisfaction of the Independent National Electoral Commission, and
(d) any other qualification acceptable by the Independent National Elect
“he has been educated up to at least School Certificate level or its equivalent.
It would be recalled that nigerwatch newspaper reports http://www.nigerwatchnewspaper.com/news/exclusive-controversies-trailing-governor-bellos-documents/?ak_action=reject_mobile
Without any attachment of certificates to verify claims, how would the INEC now hold that Governor Abubakar Sani Bello has met requirement for election into the Senate?