I’m Not Ready To Allow My Defamers Smile By Resigning – Adebayo Shittu
Nigeria’s Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu, who was disqualified by APC from Oyo Governorship primaries, has stated that he won’t be resigning any time soon.
According to Adebayo Shittu in an interview with Everest Amaefule, resigning will mean handing his defamers a smile which they never earned. Here are excerpts from the interview;
Looking at recent events, you took your party to court; it appears you are planning to defect. Are you planning to defect?
No, I will not defect. I have a divine bond with Mr President, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.). Even as a foundation member of the All Progressives Congress, there has been enough provocation for me to defect but my bond, I believe, is made in heaven with my leader and mentor – the person I am trying to imitate in terms of his incorruptibility, patriotism, and commitment to getting things done properly and in terms of respect for the rule of law. I will not defect. Even though other political parties have offered me carrots, inviting me to come and be their party’s candidate, I remain steadfast in the APC.
I believe that wherever injustice surfaces, it is part of our binding duty to fight it to a halt. You will recall that on a few occasions when Mr President did not get justice from the political field, he went to court even if he didn’t still get justice from the court at that time. He remained steadfast and at the end of the day, he got justice from the public who eventually voted for him in 2015 in such a way that left no person in doubt as to his victory.
If you are saying that the law does not require you to present NYSC certificate in order to contest an election, the law requires that you have it before you hold an office. So, if you are going to contest, is it not normal to assume that you should hold one?
Holding an office is different from civil service office. With regards to political offices, you don’t have to have it. That is one. This is a matter that the court had already decided on in 1979 when I won election into the House of Assembly. My opponent at that time went to court to challenge my election and the court decided that I needed not to have an NYSC certificate of whatever colouration. And in any case, even if the court had not decided; it is the same provision of the law that guided participation in the election in 1979 that still exists in the current constitution. Of course, these issues have to be submitted to the court. So, I don’t need to address them now at this stage. We will meet in court. We will find out where they got their own law from.
A lot people are also expecting that you should follow in the footsteps of your former colleague in the cabinet, Kemi Adeosun, instead of heaping a moral burden on the government.
Is my case the same as that of Kemi Adeosun? It is completely different. Kemi Adeosun, unfortunately, had someone procure for her a forged NYSC exemption certificate, which she didn’t need anyway. She didn’t need it. I have not presented any forged certificate. It is like light and darkness; you don’t compare the two.
So with these controversies, you don’t think you should resign and not burden the party.
There is no controversy. My traducers: I will not make them happy. I will not put smile on their faces. They will continue to lament and lament and lament and look at me climb up politically. So, as long as I am concerned, I don’t know where they got their story from; that the President was expecting me to resign. Resign for what? Did I commit a crime? I plead not guilty to such charge from any quarters.