Barely two weeks after the Osun State Election Petitions tribunal gave a majority judgment in his favour as winner of the Osun governorship election, an Abuja High Court has voided the candidature of Ademola Adeleke of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
On March 22, 2019, the tribunal had voided the rerun election, declared Adeleke winner of the original election and also directed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to issue him a certificate of return.
However, in a twist of events on Tuesday, Justice Othman Musa annulled Adeleke’s emergence as the flagbearer of the PDP in the state on the grounds that he did not have the required educational qualification.
According to the judge, this is a violation of Section 177 of the 1999 Constitution as amended, which states that candidates contesting for governorship positions should have secondary school qualification.
Wahab Raheem and Adam Habeeb, two members of the All Progressives Congress (APC), had filed a suit seeking Adeleke’s disqualification from the contest.
The Judge said findings by the court proved that Adeleke was enrolled in a secondary school in 1976, but there was no record to show he graduated, as his name wasn’t in the school register from 1980.
Bankola Akomolafe, counsel to the plaintiff, hailed the judgment. However, Nathaniel Oke (SAN), counsel to Adeleke, stated that an Osun State High Court had earlier ruled on the matter and certified Adeleke qualified to contest in the election.