Justice Oathman Musa of the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Bwari, Abuja, has nullified the nomination of Senator Ademola Adeleke as the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the September 2018 governorship election in Osun State.
Adeleke, who represents Osun West Senatorial District at the Senate, was PDP’s candidate for the state in the 2018 governorship election.
Two chieftains of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Wahab Raheem and Adam Habeeb, had in 2018, few days to the governorship election, taken Adeleke to court.
Both of them had accused him of not possessing the requisite educational qualification (secondary school certificate) to contest the office of governor.
They consequently prayed the court for an order to disqualify Adeleke from participating in the September 22 governorship election in the state on the ground that he does not have the required educational qualification.
Delivering judgment in the suit yesterday, Justice Musa annulled Adeleke’s nomination on the ground that he violated Section 177 of the 1999 Constitution.
The section stipulates that candidates for the position of governor must be educated up to a secondary school level.
According to Justice Musa, while the court’s findings showed that Adeleke entered secondary school in 1976, there was no record indicating that he actually graduated since his name was no longer seen in the school’s register from 1980.
Justice Musa further held that the result Adeleke attached to his form CF001, which he submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was fake, as it was found to be different from the one presented to the court by the principal of Ede Muslim High School, Ede, Osun State.
But Adeleke’s lawyer, Nathaniel Oke (SAN), has faulted the judgment on the ground that the judge erred in law by going out of his way to source for evidence to arrive at his “unjust conclusion”.
The lawyer maintained that the court erred particularly when it ignored WAEC evidence that Adeleke was educated up to Secondary School level as required by law.
Oke also disclosed Adeleke’s intention to approach the Court of Appeal on the matter, expressing confidence that the judgment cannot stand at the Appeal Court.
The West African Examination Council (WAEC) had, in the course of the trial, confirmed that Adeleke sat for the May/June examination of the council in 1981.
The council in an affidavit deposed to by one Osindeinde Adewunmi and filed at the registry of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court, confirmed that Adeleke sat for the Senior Secondary School exams in May/June 1981.
The confirmation was contained in a four-paragraph affidavit filed in compliance with the order of Justice Musa, requesting the examination body to confirm whether the governorship candidate sat for the 1981 exams.