Court bars Wike From Evicting Sacked Permanent Secretaries | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Court bars Wike From Evicting Sacked Permanent Secretaries

Posted: Jan 21, 2016 at 8:08 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Igoniko Oduma


Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, and other agencies of the state government were on Thursday 21 January 2016 ordered by the National Industrial Court sitting in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, not to evict sacked Permanent Secretaries from their official residences.
The affected Permanent Secretaries numbering eight had on 12 January 2016 instituted a legal action at the industrial court against Wike and the government to protest their compulsory retirement from the civil service of Rivers State.
The Permanent Secretaries are Sam Woka, Kadilo Brown, Augustine Orlu-Orlu, Muka Nwikosi, Minabelema Michael-West,  Ngozi Abu, Kingsley Hart and  Justina Jumbo.

Also joined in the suit were Attorney-General of the state, the Head of Service of the state, the Rivers State Civil Service Commission and the Accountant General of the state.
The presiding judge, Justice Agbadu Fishim, had adjourned the matter until Thursday 21 January 2016 to hear the motion for interlocutory injunction.
When the matter came up for hearing on Thursday, Justice Fishim, expressed concern over fear of ejection and other issues raised by the claimants.
He said accommodation is very important and lack of it is capable of destabilising anybody.
Justice Fishim therefore ordered the defendants including Governor Wike through their counsel,  Frank Onyiri, not to tamper with the plaintiffs (claimants) accommodation.
He urged the defendants’ lawyer to advise his clients to follow the rule of law and not to do anything that would undermine the court.
The defendants’ lawyer, Onyiri, told the court that the directive would be communicated to his clients, assuring the judge that the plaintiffs would not be evicted.
In view of the defendants’ promise not to eject them (the plaintiffs) from their official premises,  Justice Fishim adjourned the case until April 12, 2016 for further hearing.
Counsel for the plaintiffs, Tuduru Ede, in his submission, asked the court to record the undertaking of the defendants’ counsel to the effect that his clients would not be evicted from their allocated premises.

“The counsel for the defendants, that is the head of service, the civil service commission, the attorney general and to the governor of Rivers State, has given an undertaking before the court that the defendants will not tamper with all the issues raised by the claimants in their cases against the defendants pending the determination of the suit.

“The issues are that they should not evict the claimants from their allocated premises,  that they should not take the vehicles of the claimants from them and that they should not stop their salaries. These are the issues we presented before the court.

“The defendants’ counsel has given an undertaking before the court. We believe the court has no option but to record him for the undertaking.

“So, as far as we are concerned,  nothing will happen to the claimants pending the determination  of all the processes before the court”, Ede said.