The National Industrial Court, Abuja,has ordered the Nigerian Building and Road Research Institute to pay its former Director-General, Joseph Ali, his outstanding salaries within 60 days.
Though the total outstanding balance of the salaries was not declared, it was said to have covered the months of April to December 2011.
Ali had sought redress in court for various declarations and reliefs among which was declaration that the suspension of his salaries and allowances by the defendant was unlawful and a breach of his fundamental human right.
He also sought a declaration that he was still in the public service of the federation as a substantive staff of the NBRRI until his compulsory retirement on October 27, 2015.
He said he was therefore entitled to all the rights, privileges and benefits as a public servant.
In her judgment, Justice Zaynab Bashir said: “The claimant should be paid all outstanding balance of his salaries for the months of April to December 2011.
“Also his salaries for the period he was in the employment of the defendant up to the time of his compulsory retirement in 2015, although less the period of two years of his contract employment with Energy Commission of Nigeria, be paid in full.”The court further awarded the sum of N200,000 to the claimant against the defendant for damages.
The judge ordered that the judgment should be complied with within 60 days, after which the judgment sum shall attract 10 per cent interest per annum.
Counsel to the claimant, Musa Haruna, in his submission said his client’s tenure as a DG expired in 2010 and the board of the institute informed him to stay as a director of research if he so desired.
The counsel further averred that the claimant requested to proceed on his 145 days deferred and sabbatical leave, a request upon which an approval was granted.
He said the claimant’s salary was not paid in full from April to December, 2011.
Haruna also said the salaries were completely suspended from January 2012 until his time of compulsory retirement in October 2015 when he attained the mandatory age of 65.
The defence counsel, Faruk Khamaghan, in his argument said the claimant retired in 2010 at the expiration of his tenure as a DG.
Khamaghan said the claimant was taken in for a contract employment for two years by ECN as against the sabbatical leave that was granted by the defendant.
Joined as co-respondent in the suit was the minister of science and technology.