Femi Fani-Kayode, Director of Publicity, PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation, said All Progressives Congress’ (APC) presidential candidate, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, was not qualified to contest the forthcoming presidential election.
He stated that Buhari’s inability to submit his first School Leaving Certificate to Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was enough to disqualify him.
Fani-Kayode stated this at a news conference on Saturday in Abuja.
He emphasized that the inability of Buhari to present the minimum requirement – his first school leaving certificate – questioned his morals and other credentials for pursuing his ambition.
He said the realisation brought to the fore, how and what qualifications were used to recruit the retired General into the military, without the minimum of a school leaving certificate.
This, he said, was especially so, when he rose to the rank of a General and became the Head of State through a military coup that truncated a democratically-elected government in 1983.
The former minister, however, queried INEC’s alleged involvement in a cover up with the APC presidential candidate.
He said beyond the moral burden of human rights abuses and other sundry anti-democratic practices in Buhari’s public records, his disdain for democratic conduct had not changed.
Fani-Kayode added that academic qualification was an issue that could not be waived for any citizen, irrespective of his position and religion except as provided by the constitution.
He said, “It must be stated that INEC erred in law by publishing the name of a candidate without receiving the personal particulars of the candidate within seven days of receiving his nomination forms as indicated in Section 31(3).
“This is indeed a tragedy illustrating what Nigeria has become – that an individual is so powerful that the law has to be ignored to accommodate him.
“Certainly, INEC’s printing of nomination forms or High Court affidavits is in no way or by any stretch of definitions, the same as personal particulars such as school leaving certificate,” he said.
He said what was more tragic, was the fact that two respected western political elites were in the vanguard of promoting and defending Buhari “in this rape of the Nigerian Constitution.”
He said from available records, Buhari had consistently perpetuated “this contempt and disdain for due democratic process in a serial form since the beginning of this democratic dispensation.”
He said the trend was an indication that the country’s democracy was in trouble because it was now “the rule of men and not the rule of law.”