Industrial Court stops El-Rufai’s investigation of Kaduna NLC strike

Posted by News Express | 17 July 2021 | 226 times

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•Kaduna State governor, Nasir El-Rufai

 

By BENNETT OGHIFO

The National Industrial Court in Abuja, under trial judge, Honourable Justice Osatohanmwen Ayodele Obaseki-Osaghae yesterday restrained a Judicial Commission of Inquiry set up by Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State from investigating the five-day warning strike by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and its affiliate unions in Kaduna State to protest the disengagement of civil servants by the state government.

The strike, which crippled activities in the state, was eventually suspended at the instance of the federal government that offered to mediate, according to the NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, “to honour the invitation of the federal government to mediate in the dispute between labour and the Kaduna State Government.”

Obviously dissatisfied, Governor el-Rufai soon went ahead to institute the seven-member Judicial Commission, headed by Justice Ishaq Bello with 14 terms of reference, which among others is to “determine the legality of the strike and any breach of the relevant laws on trade disputes and essential services.”

Regardless, Honourable Justice Obaseki-Osaghae yesterday stopped the commission of inquiry “from enquiring into, deliberating upon, investigating, procuring evidence, whether by compelling the attendance before it (by issuance of witness summon (es) or warrant (s) of arrest or howsoever members of the 1st claimant.”

Femi Falana, SAN, who represented Labour, had prayed for court orders “setting aside the establishment of the 3rd defendant/respondent as constituted by the 1st defendant/respondent and as comprised of the 4th to 12th defendants/respondents or by whomsoever else the Judicial Commission of Inquiry might hereafter be variously presided over, until the determination of the claimants’/applicants’ Motion for Interlocutory Injunction filed contemporaneously with the filing of this ex-parte application, or further order.

“An order of interim injunction restraining the 3rd defendant/respondent as constituted by the 1st defendant/respondent and presided over by the 3rd defendant/respondent or by whomsoever else the Judicial Commission of Inquiry might hereafter be variously presided over and otherwise constituted, from enquiring into, deliberating upon, investigating, or from continuing to enquire into, deliberate upon, investigate, or from further enquiring into, deliberating upon, investigating, procuring evidence, whether by compelling the attendance before it (by issuance of witness summons(es) or Warrant(s) of arrest, or howsoever otherwise), members of the 1st claimant/applicant or other members of the public to tender any evidence or render assistance to the 3rd defendant/respondent in its enquiries, deliberations, determinations, investigation, in relation to the activities of the 1st claimant/respondent of May 16 2021 to May 19 2021 or any other related activity of the 1st claimant/respondent arising therefrom or connected thereto, until the determination of the claimants/applicants’ Motion for Interlocutory Injunction filed contemporaneously with the filing of this ex parte application, or further order.

“An order of interim injunction restraining the 3rd defendant/respondent from giving effect to and/or acting pursuant to the powers contained in the Terms of Reference of the 3rd Defendant dated 6th July 2021 as set up by the 1st Defendant under the Commissions of Inquiry Law (Cap 34), Laws of Kaduna State of Nigeria, until the determination of the claimants’/applicants’ Motion for Interlocutory Injunction filed contemporaneously with the filing of this ex-parte application, or further order.

“An order of interim injunction restraining the defendants, whether acting by themselves, their servants, agents, privies or otherwise howsoever, from inviting, ascertaining, examining, procuring evidence, summoning, subpoenaing, making orders as to cost and compelling members of the 1st claimant/applicant to attend any hearing session, meeting, “trial”, interrogation, investigation, panel session, howsoever called, in relation to, and/or connected with the 1st claimant/applicant’s warning strike of May 16 2021 to May 19 2021, and the actions and events associated with it, until the determination of the claimants’/applicants’ Motion for Interlocutory Injunction filed contemporaneously with the filing of this ex-parte application, or further order.

“An order of this Honourable Court granting leave to the claimants/applicants to issue and serve the Originating Summons and every other court processes in this suit on the defendants/respondents in Kaduna, out of the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, via Kaduna State Government House, Kaduna, Kaduna State.” (THISDAY)


Source: News Express

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