Nancy Maldonado, a federal judge of the US district court for the northern district of Illinois, earlier ordered the CSU to release the documents to Atiku. CSU complied on Monday.
Upon the release of the documents, several newspapers reported that the documents authenticate Tinubu’s certificates.
CLAIM 1: Tinubu did or did not attend CSU.
VERIFICATION: FIJ reviewed the 32-page document released by CSU and found that the university management confirmed Tinubu attended its institution.
The documents made available to Atiku maintains that Tinubu’s replacement certificate dated June 27, 1997 was issued by the university. The school also provided certificates of students who obtained their diplomas in 1979, and whilst these differ from the replacement certificate Tinubu submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) ahead of the 2023 election, they bear semblance with the replacement certificates of 1998 and 1999.
FIJ compared Tinubu’s certificate with the samples provided by CSU and found that whilst the logos look similar, the year ‘1867’ is missing from Tinubu’s.
On closer inspection, we found that a signature on the lower right of the page appears legible in a position that is lower than where the year should appear. This means if poor photocopying cropped the year out, the signature should have suffered a similar fate.
FIJ also observed that the words ‘With Honours’ are included in Tinubu’s certificate underneath ‘Buisness Administration’, but none of the samples provided by CSU show those words underneath the course of study.
The presence of ‘With Honours’ in Tinubu’s certificate is a tautology because the certificate goes on to read, “with all the rights, honours, and privileges partaining therto.”
CONCLUSION: Released CSU documents authenticate Tinubu’s certificates. Even though it is now confirmed that Tinubu indeed attended Chicago State University (CSU), the replacement certificate he has been tendering did not emanate from the university.
CLAIM 2: Tinubu attended the university as a man — or a woman.
According to the CSU, the Bola Tinubu who attended their institution, is male.
Confirming his admission into the institution in 1977, the university referred to Tinubu as ‘Mr’. The letter was dated September 8, 1977, and was signed by James Pappas for the Department of Admissions.
In his undergraduate admissions application, Tinubu also checks the ‘male’ box to indicate he was male at the time of applying. It also says he was a US citizen.
However, the CSU’s revelation includes a document that infers the credentials used to gain admission belonged to a female.
CONCLUSION: The Tinubu who attended the institution is a man but he did so by tendering a woman’s documents.
CLAIM3: Tinubu is 71 years old.
Nigeria’s president is officially 71. Records he made available to INEC state that he was born on March 29, 1952. This information presented as a statement of fact to the electoral body differs from the information in the documents released by the CSU.
Academic records handed to Atiku Abubakar by CSU have the president’s date of birth as March 29, 1954. This means the owner of the academic records should be 69 as of press time, and not 71.
Its undergraduate admissions application attached above also has a different birth date. The candidate who applied to study in CSU under the Bola Tinubu name was born on March 29, 1955. This person would be 68 in 2023.
CONCLUSION: Tinubu is either 68, 69, 71 or older. The documents made available by the CSU raise more questions than answers, and although StechiteGist Media observed that the university says Tinubu attended and graduated, the discrepancies in his certificate are yet to be reconciled.
VERDICT: Even though the documents from Chicago State University indeed confirmed that Tinubu attended the university, they also show Tinubu has been dishonest in his claims about his age, gender and replacement certificate.