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HURIWA expresses concern over Federal High Court verdict on Governor Mbah’s NYSC certificate

By Bertram Nwannekanma
09 November 2023   |   4:22 pm
The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) yesterday expressed concern over the recent judgment delivered by the Federal High Court, Abuja, regarding the authenticity of Enugu State Governor Peter Mbah's National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) certificate.

Peter Mbah

The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) yesterday expressed concern over the recent judgment delivered by the Federal High Court, Abuja, regarding the authenticity of Enugu State Governor Peter Mbah’s National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) certificate.

According to the group, the judgment delivered on November 6, by Hon. Justice Inyang Ekwo, has raised significant doubts about the integrity of the Nigerian judicial system.

Addressing a press briefing , HURIWA’s National coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, recalled that the controversy surrounding Governor Peter Mbah’s NYSC certificate began in February 2023 when the NYSC disavowed the authenticity of the certificate in question. Governor Mbah responded by filing a lawsuit against the NYSC, demanding N20 billion in compensation for conspiracy, deceit, and misrepresentation of facts.

Onwubiko during the press conference, said one major concern is the assertion by Justice Inyang Ekwo that the NYSC could have prosecuted Governor Mbah if they believed his certificate was forged.

This interpretation of the NYSC Act , he said was erroneous, as the NYSC lacks the legal authority to act as a public prosecutor in cases of certificate forgery”.

HURIWA also pointed out the lack of consideration for the fact that the Inspector General of Police was actively investigating the allegations against Governor Mbah. “The absence of any mention of the actions taken by the Inspector General of Police raises doubts about the comprehensiveness and fairness of the judgment.

“The timing of the judgment, just days before the Appeal Court Lagos was set to hear the Labour Party’s appeal against the Enugu State gubernatorial election petition tribunal judgment, raises suspicions of potential interference with the ongoing legal process.

“A comprehensive and impartial review of the judgment to ensure that justice is served and the rule of law prevails. They urged the judiciary to uphold its independence and adhere to the principles of fairness and justice,” the group added.

HURIWA commended the NYSC for its unwavering stance on the matter, citing it as an example of an institution with zero tolerance for corruption.
The group also called upon Nigerians to support the NYSC and urged the complete ban of individuals with questionable characters from participating in politics.

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