30th June, 2010
The Chairman, Orile-Agege Local Council Development Area of Lagos State, South West Nigeria, Taofeek Adaranijo, has been accused of forging the West African Examination Council (WAEC) certificate which he used in running for previous elections.
His accuser is a group, Liberation Congress, Lagos State (LASLIC), which petitioned the Inspector-General of Police, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), among others, to investigate the certificate forgery allegation.
At a news conference in Lagos yesterday, the group alleged that the chairman used his late brotherâ€™s certificate to contest as councillor in Ward K, Agege Local Government, in 1997.
Chairman, LASLIC, Mr. Abiodun Adekunle, alleged that the certificate of return issued to Adaranijo at that time could be investigated and requested for through the office of the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC).
He further alleged that Adaranijo, in 2003, was invited to Panti, Yaba, by the police, to explain how he got the General Certificate of Examination (GCE) which he was using and whose authenticity could not be proved.
Adekunle allged that the then Deputy Commissioner of Police, L.O. Omogbemi, wrote to WAEC to verify if the authenticity of Adaranijo’s certificate and was denied, leading to the chairman’s detention.
â€œIn addition, he had used same false certificate to acquire Ordinary National Diploma (OND) from The Polytechnic, Ibadan, Oyo State and Post Graduate Diploma at Olabisi Onabanjo University.
â€œLASLIC firmly believe that the only way to salvage the electoral process in Nigeria and make our vote count is for the electorate to always be on guard and shun personal and other primordial interest,â€ Adekunle stated.
The group therefore demanded that Adaranijo resign from office immediately for deceiving Orile-Agege voters by presenting alleged forged certificate and that the Lagos State House of Assembly should investigate the allegation with a view to removing the council chairman from office.
It also called on the EFCC and ICPC to investigate the chairman in consonance with the acts setting them up as stipulated in Section 5(1)b and 6(1)a and b of the EFCC Act, including section 6(a) of the ICPC Act.
Responding to the allegations, Adaranijo said they were fabricated lies aimed at smearing his image, adding that the certificate presented to WAEC for verification was never his own.
He stated that his WAEC results were genuine and authentic and that he was ready to present them to the public when the need arose, while also stating that all the numbers quoted in the press briefing statement were fabricated.
â€œI was never detained at Panti. Go there and verify. This is not the first time and it will not be the last,â€ he said, adding that things like this should be expected in a political era.
â€”Kazeem Ugbodaga & Eromosele Ebhomele