Ex-provost Kwara COED, Ilorin drags Gov AbdulRazaq, Attorney General, others to courts over sack

The appointment of a substantive Provost for the Kwara State College of Education, Ilorin may hit brick walls as the embattled former Provost of Kwara State College of Education, Ilorin, Professor AbdulRaheem Yusuf, has dragged the Kwara State Governor, Mallam AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq before a National Industrial Court over his alleged illegal sack.
He also sought for an order restraining the state government and management of the school from appointing any person as his replacement.
It would be recalled that the College had begun the process for the appointment of a provost and have shortlisted three applicants for final screening.
Joined in the suit are College of Education, Ilorin, Governing Council and Registrar of the School, and the state Attorney General.
Yusuf, in the suit NICN/IL/08/2021 brought the case pursuant to Section 6(6)(A) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (As Amended), Order 17, Rules 1 and 4(A) of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (Civil Procedure) Rules 2017.
The ex-provost accused the state government of terminating his appointment arbitrarily and urged the court to declare the action as null and void and of no effect and a violation of his fundamental human right.
According to him, he was not removed in line with provision of Section 26 (5) of the College of Education, Ilorin, Law, CAP 15, Laws of Kwara State, 2006
In a 23-page statement, the former Provost sought several declarations and orders on the basis that his appointment cannot be terminated until the expiration of his statutory five- year tenure of office.
The claimant, through his legal representatives, Lanre Yahya and Ibn Mahmud prayed the court that “appointment or removal of the claimant as the provost of the 1st defendant contained in the 1st defendant’s letter of 21/05/2021 is arbitrary, unlawful, illegal, null and void and of no effect and violates the claimant’s fundamental right to fair hearing as enshrined in the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).’
He also prayed the court to compel the state government to reinstate him as the Provost of the school and also pay him all accrued salaries, allowances and other entitlements from the time he was appointed till when his appointment will elapse.
The claimant also sought for the payment of five million naira as damages by the defendants.
The statement added that as alternative to the prayers of the claimants, that the court should order that the embattled provost be paid “all his severance allowances/benefits, emoluments, entitlements and all other benefits legitimately accruing to the Claimant having served as the Provost of the 1st Defendant from 2nd May, 2018 until the abrupt termination of his appointment on 21/05/2021 which are:
Consolidated Salaries from 21/05/2021 to 1/05/2023 when the Claimant’s tenure would have statutorily ended amounting to N7,238,898.81 (Seventeen Million, two hundred and thirty eight thousand, eight hundred and ninety eight naira, eighty one kobo.
One year sabbatical allowance equivalent to the Claimants annual salary being N6,673,122.12k per annum. Wardrobe allowance in the sum of One Million Naira Only.”
Meanwhile, in their defence, the school management and governing council stated that the provost’s removal followed due process.
The defendants through their legal representatives, Lawal Victor Jimoh, Saka Ayodeji AbdulRazaq, Isiaka AbdulRasheed and Sanni AbdulWahab Jawondo, averred that the removal of the erstwhile provost was in line with enabling law.
The Defendants stated that the Claimant could only enjoy the 5 years term of his appointment, if the interest of the 1st Defendant so permitted. The statement said, “the removal of the claimant from office was in the interest of the 1st Defendant and in line with Section 26(5) of the 1st Defendant’s law pursuant to which, the claimant was removed.
“Upon consultation by the 4th Defendant with the 2nd Defendant, it was discovered that continuation of the claimant as Provost is no longer in the interest of the 1st Defendant.”
Defendants averred that that the appointment of the claimant as the Provost of the 1st Defendant could either be terminated under the letter of appointment or pursuant to the law which establishes the 1st Defendant and pursuant to which the Claimant was appointed and removed.
The Defendants further stated that while in the case of termination of the Claimant’s appointment, the Claimant is entitled to three months notice or three months’ salary in lieu of notice, however in the case of the removal of the claimant under Section 26(5) of the enabling law; the provisions of the letter of appointment are not applicable.
They added that the claimant’s fundamental rights to fair hearing was never breached as the removal of the 1st Defendant was in strict compliance with the extant law of the 1st Defendant which required no notice to the claimant.
The Defendants averred however that placement of advert is the statutory pre-requisite to fill the vacant seat of the Provost of the 1st Defendant, adding that 26(5) of the 1st Defendant’s law permitted the removal of the claimant before the expiration of the 5 years’ tenure, “The Claimant is therefore, upon his removal, not entitled to any rights or privileges of office of the Provost of the 1st Defendant,” the statement further said.

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