Timipre Sylva’s Governorship Ambition Runs Into Trouble, As Timi Frank Exhumes Certificate, Identity Theft Allegations Against Him.

by Area Talk

The governorship ambition of the immediate past Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, and APC, Governorship candidate for the November election, Timipre Sylva, may be stalled over alleged certificate forgery and identity theft levelled against him by former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Timi Frank.

Frank’s legal representatives have written to the National Assembly, Nigeria Police Force and Department of State Services, DSS, and other relevant security agencies to immidiately commence investigation on Sylva over the allegations.

Sylva is the governorship flagbearer of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the Bayelsa Nov. 11 guber election.

But Frank had in his petition made an appeal through his lawyers asking the Senate President, Speaker, House of Representatives, Inspector General of Police and the Director General of the DSS, among others, on the matter on the critical petition against the former Minister.

The petitioner, in his letter written on March 31, 2023, and signed by the Principal Partner of Graylaw Practice LP, Edward Omaga Esq., the legal representatives of Frank, urging the National Assembly to summon Sylva and officials from his Alma maters in Nigeria and Switzerland, to probe on Sylva to explain the disparities in his identity.

According to the petitioner, Sylva’s primary school certificate carried his name as Anagha Timipere as evident in documents the ex-Minister filed before a court in the United States as part of an ongoing defamation suit brought by his lawyers.

Frank alleged that AnaghaTimipere was different from Marlin Anagha Timipre, which is the name on Sylva’s WAEC certificate.

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He claimed that the ex-petroleum minister had also obtained his bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Port-Harcourt, with the certificate bearing Anagha Timipre Marlin.

According to Frank, this clearly contradicted Sylva’s 2011 doctoral degree certificate in International Relations from Ubis University, Switzerland, with the name Chief Timipre Sylva.

He further hinted that Sylva neither participated in the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme nor did he obtained an exemption certificate as required by law.

The petition reads in part: “Obviously, the certificates mentioned above have visible anomalies and do not depict the true identity of CHIEF TIMPRE SYLVA. It is confusing as to who CHIEF TIMIPRE SYLVA is; who ANAGHA TIMIPRE MARLIN is; who MARLIN ANAGHA TIMIPRE is and who ANAGHA TIMIPERE is.

“There is no evidence anywhere showing that CHIEF TIMPRE SYLVA ever changed his name from ANAGHA TIMIPRE MARLIN to TIMIPRE SYLVA in 1986 after he purportedly graduated from University of Port Harcourt,” stated the petition.

“Investigation by our client reveals that there is also no record that the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources has National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Discharge or Exemption Certificate, as the case may be, either in the name of ANAGHA TIMIPRE MARLIN or TIMIPRE SYLVA.”

It was gathered that what made Frank to continue to insist on the allegations was the obvious discrepancies in the documents which the petitioner said that Sylva may have forged his academic certificates or had them stolen from a third party, “an offence that violates Section 438 of the Criminal Code Act and carries a 14-year prison sentence.”

Frank urged both chambers of the National Assembly to summon the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB), and State Security Services (SSS) officials for their roles in screening and approving Sylva’s ministerial appointment as well as his successful governorship bid in 2007.

According to him, after learning that his identity inconsistencies could imperiled his governorship ambition, Sylva filed processes to change his name to Timipre Sylva in an official Government Gazette of May 12, 2022.

Frank stated that before seeking to change his name in an official gazette, Sylva had already served as Bayelsa State governor between 2007 and 2012, and also Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, among other top-level state and federal positions.

The petitioner, also prayed the National Assembly to summon Sylva and officials from all the academic institutions that issued him certificates to confirm the actual identity of who they awarded the academic certificates.

The institutions include Ajeromi Central School in Apapa, Lagos, West African Examination Council (WAEC), University of Port-Harcourt and Ubis University, Switzerland.

Frank called on the Nigerian Immigration Service, through the National Assembly, to seize Sylva’s International Passport to prevent him from fleeing the country and seeking refuge in Western nations like U.S., Dubai, Canada, etc.

Frank, who is Ambassador to the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP), and East Africa and Middle East, also petitioned the Governor of Bayelsa State and Speaker of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly, to urgently commence investigation to unravel the authenticity of certificates and true identity of Sylva.

He called on the state to de-recognise Sylva as former Governor of the State, if found to have either forged his certificates or altered his identity.

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