by Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna
Retired Permanent Secretaries and Heads of Service in Kaduna state have dragged Kaduna state governor, Malam Nasir el-Rufai, and Kaduna state Attorney-General to the National Industrial Court, NIC, challenging the deduction of their pensions for use to fight the Covid-19 pandemic in the state.
Counsel to the plaintiffs, Barrister Sam Atung, Esq., while addressing newsmen after filing the suit, said the deduction from his clients’ pension started in March, 2020, without their prior notice.
“In view of that, we have now instituted a case at the National Industrial Court on the ground of pension right of the plaintiffs as enshrined under Section 210 of the 1999 constitution, as amended, challenging the recent decision of the Kaduna State Government on the deduction of monthly pension of the plaintiffs in the matter.
“We went to court for the court to determine whether by a construction of clear and unambiguous provision, amongst others, the entire of Section 210 of the Kaduna state Pension Reform Law, 2016, the plaintiffs’ right to pension being retired officers in the public service of Kaduna state is not guaranteed and protected.
“The plaintiffs are seeking a declaration that the defendants’ purported reduction of their monthly pension to their disadvantage is unconstitutional, utra vires the defendants and, therefore, null and void ab-initio.
Counsel is equally seeking an order directing the Defendant to
pay the plaintiffs the difference in their monthly pension resultant from the
Defendant’s unlawful deductions from the plaintiffs’ monthly pensions, which
commenced in the month of March, 2020.
The plaintiff is also seeking an order of Perpetual Injunction restraining the Defendants whether by themselves, agents, officers, successors, agencies, parastatals, commissions, etc., whomsoever and howsoever otherwise from acting in any manner whatsoever prejudicial to the plaintiffs enjoyment of their pension rights as retired public servants in the public service of Kaduna state.