Adebayo Shittu, Minister of Communication

Exclusion from primary: Court dismisses Shittu’s case against APC

NEWS DIGEST–A Federal High Court, Ibadan on Friday struck out a suit filed by the Minister of Communication, Adebayo Shittu, against the All Progressives Congress (APC) over exclusion of his name for his inability to produce evidence of participating in the one-year mandatory National Youths Service Corps (NYSC) scheme.

Justice P.I. Ajoku struck out the suit for Shittu’s failure to file it within the time stipulated by law.

The APC had excluded his name from among aspirants due to his non-participation in the NYSC scheme after his graduation from the University of Ife. But the minister headed to the court, describing it as a breach of his human rights.

“I must first consider the provision of Section 285 of the constitution that makes it mandatory for all pre-election matters to be filed within 14 days of occurrence.

“This particular case was not filed within 14 days, but outside the date.

“Therefore, I will not bother going into the merit of the case.

“Having failed to satisfy the dictates of the constitution, the matter is hereby struck out,” the Judge ruled.

In his reaction to the ruling , the defence counsel, Mr Adebayo Ojo, who was the former Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice Oyo State, said that the law has taken its due course.

“The judge acted by the 1999 constitution and it is a victory for democracy,” Ojo said.

Shittu’s counsel, Mr Abdulhakeem Mustafa, (SAN) had tendered a 38-paragraph affidavit and 13 exhibits to support his claims.

Shittu prayed the court to determine whether the action of his party to omit his name in the list of governorship aspirants was lawful or a contravention of the constitution.

Joined as respondent in the matter is the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

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