Alleged N421m Deduction: A'Court To Hear Suit Between Kwara, Pensioners
The court of appeal sitting in Ilorin, has fixed Monday to entertain the notice of appeal filed by the Kwara State government against the judgement restraining it from further deducting N421million monthly from the salary account of the state chapter of the Nigerian Union of Pensioners (NUP).
The state government was alleged to be using the fund deducted monthly from the pensioners account to run Junior Secondary Schools in the state.
Also joined as co-defendant in the suit are; the state's attorney general and commissioner for Justice, state Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), commissioner for Finance, Joint Local Government Account Allocation Committee, Local Government Staff Pension Board and chairman, Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON).
LEADERSHIP Weekend recalled that the claimants; the pensioners, Alh Khaliru Muhammed and Mr Samuel Ibidoja, had secured a judgement at the state high court, restraining the government from further deducting the said money monthly from their salary.
The judgement, which was handed down by Justice Matthew Adewara, described the government's action as unconstitutional, null and void, capricious, arbitrary, abuse of power and discretion.
The judgment reads in part: "It is on the basis of the claimant's view that the claimants deserve judgement in their favour against the 7th defendant.
"I hold, therefore, that the case has been proved against the 7th defendant and I enter judgement against her as per all the reliefs in the claimants' writs of summons and statement of claims.
"With regards to the claimants'claim against the 1st-6th defendants, having regard to the evidence adduced and the exhibits tendered, I hold that the claimants have proved their case on the preponderance of evidence. I hold therefore, that the claims succeed and I hereby enter judgement in their favour."
The pensioners in their three- page- counter affidavit against the motion on notice urged the court to discountenance the prayers of the appellants.
The affidavit, which was deposed to by one Alh Saidu Oladimeji, stated that the applicants' notice of Appeal does not contain any special circumstance to warrant the grant of their application.
“That the court is not in the habit of depriving a successful party the fruit of the judgement he lawfully obtained.