Court orders SOSG reinstatement of two Permanent Secretaries, payment of salary arrears for wrongful retirement

By Ado Hassan, Sokoto

A National Industrial Court of Nigeria sitting in Sokoto on Thursday ordered the reinstatement of Alhaji Suleiman S. Fulani Ahmadu, a Permanent Secretary in the Sokoto state civil service.

The Court also ordered the state government to pay Ahmadu all his salary arrears to the tune of over N1.5m effective from the date of a purported compulsary retirement of the Permanent Secretary.

In his ruling, Justice Kiyahot Damlak said that the purported  compulsary retirement of the Permanent Secretary by the Sokoto state Government on 28th August, 2018 was unconstitutional, unlawful, null and void and has no effect what so ever, hence  set aside the action.

Delivering judgement, the Court ordered the state government to pay S.Fulani over N15million being his accumulative salaries arrears and other fringes benefits for the five months, between 28 August 2018 to the date of judgements.

Justice Damlak said that the reinstated Permanent Secretary should be allowed to complete his term of service between 15th August, 2018 to 23rd July, 2025, when he will be due to complete 60 years.

The judge who cited myriad of similar judgements by supreme and other higher Courts also awarded a N100,00 cost against state government in favour of the Permanent Secretary .

Also, the Court in same judgement ordered the state government  to serve another Permanent Secretary, Alhaji Aminu Halliru Dikko for wrongful and unlawfully retirement from service.

Justice Damlak in the judgement, further ruled that the compulsary retirement of Dikko on the same day with Ahmadu was wrongful, null and void.

According to Damlak ” Dikko was employed into the state civil service in October, 1983 and by his years in service, he is exactly 34 years 10 months with two months remaining for him to complete the 35 years in service when he will be due for retirement.”

The court further ordered the state government to issue  Dikko, with proper retirement notice, adding that he was wrongfully retired on the 28th August 2018 nearly 44 days to the date he would officially retire on the basis of years of service.

The court also ordered the state government to pay Alhaji  Dikko salary for one month and 14 days covering 28 August 2018 to September 2018 which amounts to N474,609.00.

The court ordered that all the payments should be made to the applicants within 30 days from the date of judgements, failure of which will attract a 10% charge and a N100,000 cost to each applicant.

It will be recalled that the duo, Ahmadu and Dikko dragged  Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, State Head of Service and the Sokoto state civil service commission, challenging their wrongful retirement in 28th  August 2018.

They among others,  sought the Court to order their reinstatement as well as payment of N15 million for cost incurred in engaging the services of their solicitor as well N100 million each for subjecting them to the punitive, mental, pains, health and psychological trauma, among others which the Court refused to grant.

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