Dismissed ECN Deputy Director initiates contempt proceedings against minister, DG

Prof. Ita Okon Bassey Ewa, science and tech minister06 August 2013, Abuja – A dismissed Deputy Director in the Energy Commission of Nigeria, ECN, Mr Peter Chigbo, has initiated contempt proceedings against Science and Technology Minister and the commission’s Director-General.

Chigbo filed the action through his counsel, Mr Shareef Mohammed, at the National Industrial Court to challenge the refusal of the commission to comply with the court’s judgment.

The court, however, is yet to fix a date for the hearing of the case.

The News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, reports that on July 26, the court had in a judgment, set aside the dismissal of Chigbo by the commission and ordered his immediate reinstatement.

The court held that the defendants arrogated powers of the Federal Civil Service Commission to themselves by dismissing the claimant.

Similarly, the court had ordered the defendants to reinstate the wife of the claimant, Mrs Ijeoma Peter-Chigbo, whose appointment was terminated in June 2010.

Mohammed filed the two separate contempt proceedings against the minister and the commission’s director-general for their refusal to comply with court’s order.

The counsel said that the defendants could not appeal against the judgment by virtue of Section 9(1&2) of the National Industrial Court Acts 2006.

Section 9(1) says that no appeal shall lie from the decisions of the court to the Court of Appeal or any other court except as may be prescribed by this Act or any other Act of the National Assembly.

Subsection says, an appeal from the decision of the court shall lie only as of right to the appellate court only on questions of fundamental rights as contained in Chapter IV of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999.

Mohammed further stressed that the defendants have committed contempt against the court by refusing to reinstate the claimants whose appointments enjoy statutory flavour.

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