Alleged certificate forgery: Bayelsa deputy governor storms tribunal

• Denies opportunity of testifying

There was a twist on Thursday when the candidate of the Liberation Movement (LM) in the November 16, 2019 governorship election in Bayelsa, Vijah Opuama turned around and told the state governorship election petition tribunal sitting in Abuja that he no longer needs the deputy governor of the state, Senator Lawrence Oborawharievwo Ewhrudjakpo to testify for him as a witness before the tribunal.

Opuama, through his counsel, PIus Dande Pius, is challenging  Ewhrudjakpo’s qualification to stand in the Bayelsa State governorship election, on the ground that the deputy governor submitted a forged exemption certificate to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) before the election.

The tribunal had, in a subpoena on Tuesday ordered the state’s deputy governor to appear before it on Thursday to produce the original copy of his disputed certificate, following an application to that effect by the petitioner.

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In response to the subpoena, the deputy governor appeared at the tribunal and instead of calling on him to give his evidence, Pius, petitioner’s counsel informed the court that there was no longer need for the evidence of Ewhrudjakpo (the deputy governor), who is the fourth respondent in the matter.

The deputy governor, who said he was ready to show to the court the original copy of his exemption certificate as issued to him by the National Youths Service Corps (NYSC), said he never forged nor fake any of his certificates.

Another petitioner’s witness is presently giving evidence before the tribunal with several documents being tendered through him.

More to come…


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