In response to online reports from the election tribunal suggesting a change in the NYSC’s claim regarding the alleged forged certificate of Governor Peter Mbah, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has revealed it stormed the NYSC headquarters on Friday in demand of clarity and, if warranted, an immediate public apology from the NYSC’s Director-General to Governor Peter Mbah within 48 working hours.
HURIWA revealed this in a press conference on Saturday in Abuja while addressing the controversy surrounding Enugu State Governor; Peter Mbah’s NYSC Certificate reiterating the NYSC’s stance that the certificate presented by Governor Peter Mbah is not genuine and has no connection to the NYSC
Addressing the media, HURIWA’s National Coordinator; Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko emphasized its ongoing advocacy for transparency, accountability, and justice in public institutions, revealing that the Group has been actively involved in demanding clarity regarding Governor Peter Mbah’s certificate of discharge even before he assumed office as the Governor of Enugu State in addition to how it suspended its advocacy on this matter, respecting the legal process, and awaiting the judgments of both the election petition Tribunal and the regular courts.
However, HURIWA expressed concern over the misleading reports being peddled online implying that the NYSC Management has conceded the validity of the governor’s certificate, whereas the NYSC has consistently maintained its position that the certificate in question is a forgery and bears no association with the organization.
“To clarify the recent developments, HURIWA sent a delegation to the NYSC headquarters seeking confirmation of any changes in the NYSC’s claim. The NYSC top management staff firmly reiterated that they have not altered their position, confirming that Governor Peter Mbah’s NYSC certificate is fake and not issued by the NYSC”.
Hence, HURIWA emphasized that the NYSC’s assertion on the alleged forgery remains unchanged, and there has been no capitulation on the part of the NYSC. Hence, the organization called on all stakeholders, including the media, the NYSC, and Governor Peter Mbah, to respect the legal process and refrain from propagating unfounded claims.
“As a civil rights body, HURIWA’s advocacy on this matter is grounded in its commitment to upholding justice, human rights, and the rule of law. The organization remains neutral and non-partisan, seeking transparency and accountability from public officeholders”.
While urging the Media to exercise professionalism and impartiality in reporting the issue, verifying information before dissemination to avoid misinformation and confusion, HURIWA called on the NYSC to provide any additional evidence it may possess to support its claim regarding the alleged forged certificate, just as Governor Peter Mbah was also implored to cooperate fully with the legal process and present all relevant documents and evidence to the courts.
Concluding, HURIWA reaffirmed its commitment to advocating for transparency and accountability at all levels of government and public institutions. The organization trusts in the judiciary to dispense justice fairly and independently as the legal proceedings continue.
Read full statement below…
PRESS CONFERENCE STATEMENT BY THE HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (HURIWA) ON THE INSISTENCE BY THE NATIONAL YOUTH SERVICE CORPS (NYSC) THAT HIS EXCELLENCY, MR. PETER MBAH, ENUGU STATE GOVERNOR’S NYSC CERTIFICATE IS NOT FROM THE NYSC, AND THERE IS NO CAPITULATION ON THE SIDE OF THE NYSC.
Date: July 22nd, 2023
Gentlemen of the press,
Today, I stand before you on behalf of the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) to address an issue of utmost importance and national significance. We have consistently been at the forefront of demanding transparency, accountability, and justice from public institutions, and today is no different.
For some time now, HURIWA has been unwavering in our advocacy regarding the alleged forged certificate of discharge in the possession of the governor of Enugu State, Mr. Peter Mbah. Even before Mr. Peter Mbah assumed office as the governor of Enugu State, HURIWA is on record as one of the most vocal critics of the NYSC Management on this same issue involving the governor of Enugu, right from when he was a gubernatorial candidate for the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
As a civil rights body, we firmly believe in the rule of law and the independence of the judiciary. Therefore, out of respect for the powers of the competent court of law, we decided to suspend our advocacy on this matter pending the judgments of both the election petition Tribunal and the regular courts. We hold the belief that allowing the legal process to take its course is fundamental to upholding justice and protecting the sanctity of our democratic institutions.
However, throughout the legal proceedings, we have diligently monitored reports emanating from various online media sources about the election petition Tribunal. We express concern over the multitude of slanted reports that seem aimed at creating unnecessary pressure and giving the impression that the NYSC Management has conceded the validity of the governor’s certificate.
It is essential to clarify that the NYSC has consistently maintained its position that the discharge certificate presented by Governor Peter Mbah did not originate from the NYSC and has no association with the organization whatsoever. We were recently informed, precisely within the last few hours, that the NYSC steadfastly stands by this assertion, supported by unimpecable evidence that the certificate is fake.
More so, we acknowledge that the Office of the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) holds the official position of the NYSC on this matter. However, we find it disconcerting that there has been a conspicuous silence from that quarter amid the ongoing controversy. We take this opportunity to reiterate that the NYSC has not wavered in its stance on the authenticity of the governor’s certificate.
Addressing recent developments, we must clarify the reports insinuating a possible shift in the NYSC’s position. When these stories emerged online, suggesting a potential change in the NYSC’s claim, HURIWA promptly dispatched a four-man delegation to the NYSC headquarters. We demanded clarity and, if warranted, an apology from the NYSC’s Director-General to Governor Peter Mbah within 48 working hours.
However, to our astonishment, the top management staff of the NYSC who received our delegation firmly reiterated that the NYSC has not altered any aspect of its claim. They emphatically stated that Governor Peter Mbah’s NYSC certificate is fake and bears no connection to the NYSC.
Hence, HURIWA emphasizes that the NYSC’s insistence on the alleged forgery remains steadfast. We reiterate that there has been no capitulation on the part of the NYSC, and they continue to assert that Governor Peter Mbah’s certificate did not originate from the NYSC. As an organization committed to upholding the values of justice, we firmly believe that all parties involved should have their day in the competent courts of law.
We call on all stakeholders, including the media, the NYSC, and Governor Peter Mbah, to exercise restraint, respect the legal process, and refrain from propagating unfounded claims. It is crucial that we allow the courts to decide based on the evidence presented. HURIWA remains resolute in its pursuit of truth, justice, and accountability, and we will vigilantly observe and monitor this situation as it unfolds.
It is essential to understand that HURIWA’s advocacy on this matter is rooted in our commitment to defending human rights, justice, and the rule of law. We firmly believe that public officeholders, including the governor of Enugu State, must be held accountable for their actions and decisions. Our advocacy seeks to ensure that those who hold positions of power are transparent, honest, and uphold the highest standards of integrity.
We want to emphasize that our stance on this issue is not politically motivated. HURIWA remains neutral and non-partisan in all our engagements. Our only interest lies in the pursuit of truth and justice for the people of Nigeria. We encourage all Nigerians, regardless of political affiliations, to join us in this noble cause to uphold the integrity of our democratic institutions.
Furthermore, we urge the media to exercise professionalism and impartiality in their reportage on this issue. It is of utmost importance that journalists adhere to ethical standards and verify information before disseminating it to the public. Misinformation and biased reporting can lead to further confusion and hinder the progress of the legal process.
As we continue to closely monitor the proceedings of the election petition Tribunal and the regular courts, we reiterate our trust in the judiciary to dispense justice fairly and independently. We have confidence that the courts will thoroughly examine the evidence presented and make an impartial judgment.
In the spirit of transparency, we call on the NYSC to provide any additional evidence it may possess in support of its claim regarding the alleged forged certificate. The Nigerian people have a right to know the truth, and it is essential that all relevant information be brought to light.
We also implore Governor Peter Mbah to cooperate fully with the legal process and present all relevant documents and evidence to the courts. It is crucial for public officeholders to be transparent and forthcoming in their dealings to maintain public trust and confidence.
In conclusion, HURIWA reaffirms its commitment to the principles of justice, human rights, and the rule of law. We will continue to advocate for transparency and accountability at all levels of government and public institutions. Our pursuit of truth and justice is unwavering, and we will not relent until the Nigerian People get the answers they deserve.
The general public and all the stakeholders in issue, should note the reaffirmation of the scheme that the Certificate of National Service Mr Peter Mba is parading was NOT ISSUED by the National Youth Service Corps.
Thank you for your attention.
Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko,
HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (HURIWA)
Saturday July 22nd 2023.