A Federal High Court sitting in Ibadan, on Wednesday reserved until judgment in the case between Communication Minister, Mr Adebayo Shittu and All Progressives Congress (APC) over the party’s primary election Thursday.
The minister, a member of the APC, had dragged the party to court, seeking redress for allegedly denying him the right to participate in the governorship primary election in Oyo state in the just concluded general elections in the country.
He claimed that APC’s national leadership omitted his name in the list of its gubernatorial aspirants for the primaries in Oyo state because he did not participate in the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme.
After filing of written addresses by the plaintiff and the defendants, the Judge, Justice P.I. Ajoku, fixed Thursday afternoon for judgment on the relieves sought by the minister.
Counsel to the plaintiff, Mr Abdulhakeem Mustafa (SAN), had, among all other things, urged the court to determine whether the ground for disqualifying his client was lawful or a contravention of the Constitution, NAN reports.
Mustafa argued that the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria required anyone seeking to be a state governor to possess a maximum of Senior Secondary School Certificate and not necessarily an NYSC certificate.
He tendered a 38-paragraph affidavit and 13 exhibits before the court to support his claims.
In his opposition to the plaintiff’s prayer, Mr Adebayo Ojo, the defence counsel, said that the matter was already a dead issue, and therefore, academic.
“My lord, the plaintiff is merely flogging a dead horse because the matter is of no benefit to him or the party, APC.
“It has become academic; the sister case he filed in Federal High Court, Abuja, has also been struck out,” Ojo stated.
The minister has constantly maintained that the 1979 Constitution, under which he first contested for a political post, did not make it mandatory for anyone seeking an elective position to present an NYSC certificate.
Also joined in the suit is the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).