Kehinde Adewole, Ado Ekiti
Aggrieved workers affected by the disengagement exercise at Ekiti State University, Ado Ekiti, in December 2019 have written to the institution, giving it a 30-day ultimatum to reinstate them or face legal action.
The workers, in a letter entitled ‘Letter on notice and pre-action notice’, dated January 22, 2020, written by their lawyer, Olabanjo Ayenakin of Banjo Ayenakin & Co to EKSU Registrar, Olusola Arogundade, with copies made available to reporters in Ado Ekiti at the weekend, alleged that their services were illegally withdrawn from the institution.
The legal representative stated: “We the solicitors to Mrs Oyinlola Omowumi Yinka, Mr Oke Sanmi and Mr Idowu Lawrence Tosin (for themselves and on behalf of the 299 technologists, non-teaching senior staff and junior staff of your institution, who were employed in 2016, but who were unlawfully disengaged on 5th December 2019) of EKSU who are herein referred to as our client and on whose behalf this letter is caused to be written to you.”
The lawyers, who said that “the appointments of our clients were regular and proper; contrary to the insinuation that the appointments were irregular,” are seeking the “immediate restatement of our clients; and payment of all the salaries of our clients which your institution owed them before they were wrongfully disengaged from their appointments.”
The lawyers are also seeking “payment of all our clients’ salaries from the time of disengagement till now and thereafter; and promotion of our clients to the deserved position without prejudice to the disengagement.”
Ayenakin stated that EKSU disengaged “our clients on the ground that their services were no longer required when our clients had not committed any offence, infraction or any act of misconduct and when our clients were not queried, disciplined or made to face any disciplinary panel.”
According to him, the Committee of the Governing Council had refused to budge even when the affected workers, in accordance with the letter of disengagement issued to them, “individually appealed to it that they committed no offence and that their disengagements were wrongful, null and void.”
The lawyers stated: “Evidently, the disengagement of our clients in the manner in which it was done smacks of illegality and the same is apparently malicious and devoid of fair hearing. The disengagement of our clients from their appointments is a direct affront and suspicious violation of the conditions of services of our clients as enshrined in the regulations of your university.
“Take notice that if your institution fails or refuses to reinstate our clients and accede to all other ancillary requests contained in this letter within 30 days from the date on this letter, we have our clients’ instruction to seek the reliefs contained herein, and that time, we shall not hesitate to seek relief bothering on aggravated damages against your institution,” Ayenakin stated.