Godwin Tsa Abuja
The National Industrial Court (NIC) sitting in Abuja has ordered the immediate reinstatement of Captain Benedict Olusoji Akani who was compulsory retired into the Nigerian Army.
Besides, the court awarded the cost of N75m against the Nigerian Army in favour of the claimant as general damages for the pyschological trauma he suffered as a result of the illegal action against him by the Army.
The court made the orders after setting aside his compulsory retirement letter by the 1st defendant: (ref AHQ MS/300/226) dated 22nd day of June, 2017 as illegal, null and void.
The Army General Court Martial had in its judgement of November 18, 1998 sentenced and convicted the claimant who was charged on counts of stealing and conspiracy of metal panels and wire rolls.
The General Court Martial however acquitted him on allegations of stealing but found him guilty of conspiracy to steal and therefore, the 2nd defendant directed the 1st defendant to take disciplinary measures on the claimant. As a result, the 1st defendant, by Annexure 1, demoted the claimant from the rank of Captain to Second Lieutenant, and furthermore, compulsorily retired him with effect from April 10, 2000.