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Accountant General gets ultimatum to obey court, minister’s order on payment to ex-NEMA official, Shuaib

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Ahmed Idris, Accountant General of the Federation (AGF) has reportedly defied a court order and that of Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed on the payment of salary arrears to former National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, spokesperson, Yushau Shuaib.

In November 2017, the National Industrial Court in Abuja ordered the federal government to pay salary arrears to Shuaib from 2013 till the date of judgment for unlawful sack.

Justice David Isele also ordered that Shuaib be reinstated into the office without any loss to seniority, salaries, position, other emoluments, and that his salary arrears be paid within one month. This has not been fulfilled 38 months after.

In compliance, the Federal Civil Service Commission (FCSC), in September 2018, recalled Shuaib but the salary arrears remained unpaid.

A contempt charge was then filed against Lai Mohammed, seeking his committal to prison for refusal to obey the judgment.

In a letter dated March 1, 2019 and addressed to the court, Mohammed confirmed reinstating Shuaib and that the AGF had since been directed to pay the five years’ remuneration.

The Minister’s letter to the AGF seeking the salary arrears payment was signed by the Permanent Secretary and the Director of Finance of the Federal Ministry of Information.

Shuaib has taken another action. A letter to AGF Idris by Shuaib lawyer, James Ode Abah, gave him an ultimatum to pay the salary arrears or be charged to court for contempt.

The letter copied the Minister of Information, Attorney General of the Federation, Chairman FCSC, and Chairman Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters.

“We hold the office of the Accountant-General in high esteem and we anticipate the prompt compliance in the full payment of the outstanding salary arrears and emoluments due to our client from the year 2013 -2018 within 7 days from the receipt of this letter as computed by the Federal Ministry of Information and culture.

“If you do not accede to our clients demand within 7 days, we have the instruction of our client to institute contempt proceedings against you and to join your good office as a necessary party with respect to our contempt proceedings pending at the National Industrial Court”, the letter read.

The case will come up at the National Industrial Court on February 3 before Justice Oyejoju Oyebiola Oyewumi.

After his restatement in 2018, Shuaib, an award winning public relations practitioner, retired voluntarily on October 10, 2019, when he clocked 50.

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