The National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN) on Thursday ordered the Adamawa government to pay N660 million to 659 sacked teachers by the Adamawa Post Primary Board.
On August 11, 2015, the teachers sued the Adamawa government, ministry of education, Post Primary School Management Board and the commissioner for justice, seeking a declaration that their appointment was valid, lawful and not illegal, having worked for a period of 29 months.
They also sought a declaration that having worked for the defendants for 29 months they were entitled to the payment of their salaries and wage, allowances and entitlements totaling N638. 9 million.
Delivering judgment, Nelson Ogbuanya, a judge at the Yola division of the NICN, held that the state government failed to provide evidence that the teachers were disengaged.
Ogbuanya, therefore held that the teachers were still valid staff of the state government from August 2012 till date.
He also ordered the state government to pay the teachers their 29 months salaries within two weeks.
The judge also ordered the government to pay another N22 million as damages to the complainants for keeping them without salaries for the period under review.
Uguanya rued the behaviour of some employees who could trample on the peoples dignity of labour.
After the judgment, Urbanus Jonathan, state counsel said that he received the judgment with shock.
Jonathan, who represented the state ministry of justice, said he would get back to the ministry and study the judgment which copies were not yet served before deciding on the next line of action.
Also speaking, Abubakar Babakano, counsel to teachers described the judgment as a land mark one, adding that it shows that judiciary is the last hope of the common man.
Babakano said the court had given judgment to teachers and they would wait for the implementation of the judgment.
He however, urged the state government to implement the judgment without delay.
The teachers were employed by the Adamawa government under Murtala Nyako, former governor of Adamawa, in August 2012.
The teachers were deployed to various schools and stated work, were given staff numbers, and they started collecting salaries for six months.
The same government stopped paying them salaries on account that they were not professionals, given that they were not holders of either bachelors degrees in education or national certificate in education.