Court restrains Army Council from documenting Gen Ijioma’s retirement

THE Nigeria Army Council has been restrained from commencing within 90 days, the documentation of the retirement of Major-General Ijioma Ijioma.

The National Industrial Court, which issued the order on Tuesday, directed the council to maintain status quo, pending the determination of the substantive suit.

The judge, Justice Maureen Esowe, however, declined the prayers for the reinstatement of Ijioma.

She held that the claimant could not be reinstated because the substantive suit had not been heard.

“It is not for me now to put him back to his post. If we reinstate the claimant, there is nothing to be heard,’’ she held.

Ijioma’s counsel, Benson Igbanoi, who held brief for Chief Michael Ozekhome, had asked the court to direct the respondent to halt the processing of Ijioma’s entitlements.

The respondents had, through a letter, directed the claimant to complete the documentation processes for payment of all his entitlement within 90 days.

The claimant was purportedly retired on June 9, 2016.

Paul Imafidor and Michael Owolabi, who represented the Minister of Defence, Chief of Defence Staff and the Chief of Army Staff, said they were not served with the processes.

They applied for adjournment to enable them acquaint themselves with the facts of the case.

Esowe adjourned the case till October 12 and ordered that fresh hearing notices be served on the respondents.