The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) has failed to produce the original certificate of Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, before the Lagos State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal.
The tribunal, responding to a request from the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate, Abdulazeez Adediran, has directed WAEC to submit its result verification portal back-end server and other information technology infrastructure for forensic analysis.
The controversy erupted when it was alleged that Governor Sanwo-Olu had presented a forged certificate during the 2019 elections.
A careful review of his 2019 Form CF001 revealed that the claimed statement of WAEC results, indicating his enrollment in 1981 at Ijebu Ife Community Grammar School in Ogun State, was deemed invalid on the WAEC result verification portal.
The PDP candidate, Adediran, contended that Governor Sanwo-Olu had lied on oath by submitting fraudulent documents to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
In response to the petition, Governor Sanwo-Olu failed to produce the original WAEC certificate to refute the claims made by Adediran and his party.
However, the All Progressives Congress (APC), as the fourth respondent in the case, provided a printout from the portal, which contradicted Sanwo-Olu’s purported results, further raising doubts about their authenticity.
To challenge the sudden appearance of Sanwo-Olu’s WAEC results on the verification portal, Adediran, popularly known as Jandor, raised concerns regarding the credibility and validity of the uploaded document.
As a result, Jandor’s legal team subpoenaed WAEC to present the 1981 certificate in court under oath.
However, a representative from WAEC, who was expected to appear in court, revealed that they were unable to produce a duplicate copy of the May/June 1981 G.C.E. ‘O’ Level certificate belonging to Sanwo-Olu.
The representative clarified that WAEC does not retain duplicate copies of candidates’ certificates.
While it was discovered that WAEC issues attestations in the form of Certified True Copies (CTCs) in cases of lost certificates, no such attestation had been issued to verify Sanwo-Olu’s claims.
This development led to the tribunal’s decision to order WAEC to submit its back-end server and other information technology infrastructure for forensic analysis.
The aim of this analysis is to shed light on the authenticity of the sudden appearance of Governor Sanwo-Olu’s purported 1981 WAEC results on the portal.
By examining the date and time of the upload, it will become evident whether the results were present on April 7th, 2023, when Jandor and the PDP filed their petition before the tribunal.