- President Bola Tinubu has been told not to rely on hiding under US privacy law to stop the release of his academic records from Chicago State University (CSU)
- Atiku had gotten a favourable verdict from a US court in Illinois ordering the release of Tinubu's academic records within 48 hours
- However, Tinubu, through his legal representative, has filed a motion to block his academic records' release to Atiku
Illinois, US - Atiku Abubakar, the presidential bannerman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has told President Bola Tinubu that he cannot hide under the privacy law of the United States to stop the release of his academic records from the Chicago State University (CSU).
According to the Guardian, Atiku stated this in his reply to Tinubu’s objection to the order of Magistrate Judge Jeffrey Gilbert, maintaining that Tinubu’s complaint was incompetent and lacking in merit.
The PDP bannerman revealed that all the grounds of objections raised by Tinubu against the execution of the lawful order of the magistrate court were resolved by Justice Gilbert after listening to the parties.
On September 19, the court held that Atiku’s application for discovery outweighed Tinubu’s plea for protection under the privacy law.
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Tinubu had, amongst other grounds, for denying Atiku’s request, submitted that Judge Gilbert erred in directing the CSU to release documents bordering on Tinubu’s Diploma certificate, transcripts and admission letter, amongst others.
It was gathered that the judge gave credence to the argument of Atiku, which has to do with Tinubu’s qualification for the 2023 presidential election.
President Tinubu, who was not satisfied with the ruling, appealed to the court to delay the enforcement of the order till Monday, September 25, when he would formally file his objection.
In his argument, Tinubu’s legal representative argued before the court that the ruling for releasing his client’s academic records violates his rights to privacy as stipulated in the statutory provisions of the United States Constitution.
Tinubu’s attorney cited the Federal Educational Records and Privacy Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1232(g) (“FERPA”), as part of his defence against the court ruling.
Atiku counters Tinubu
Meanwhile, Atiku argued that Tinubu’s plea for privacy had no relevance in the current context of the ongoing case.
Atiku's legal attorney said:
“the assertion of a privilege or privacy interest under FERPA is a nonstarter; the statute does not give individuals any enforceable rights, " adding, “FERPA does not provide a privilege that prevents the disclosure of student records.”
Atiku further argued that Tinubu could not plead protection when he “has placed its educational records at issue, ECF 40 at 25-26 (explaining that Intervenor put his diploma at issue by submitting it to INEC and Tinubu’s records have already been introduced into the Nigerian proceedings, including by Tinubu himself, and widely published in the media”.
PEPC Verdict: Why Atiku May Defeat Tinubu at Supreme Court
Meanwhile, Atiku Abubakar is giving President Bola Tinubu a hot chase in his quest to expose some of his top secrets.
President Tinubu, since his inauguration, has been facing questionable allegations over his academic identity.
Currently, Tinubu is being held by the ribs with Atiku's strong allegations against him.