Plateau Gov. Lalong seized our N119m allowances for 5 years, say seven judges
Seven judges of the Plateau State Judiciary have accused Governor Simon Lalong of unlawfully withholding their lodging allowances of N119,112,840 over a interval of 4 to 5 years.
They mentioned 5 judicial officers had been left unpaid for 5 years, whereas two others have been being owed for 4 years.
The judges alleged that Lalong, a lawyer, intentionally seized their entitlements whereas paying different judicial officers often.
They made the allegations in a September 8 letter to Governor Lalong by their lawyer, Chief Adeniyi Akintola, SAN.
When contacted for the federal government’s aspect of the story, Plateau State Commissioner for Data Dan Mangjan mentioned he was in a gathering. He consented to receiving the enquiry by textual content, however had but to reply at press time.
The judges are Justices Muhammad l. Sirajo; Christine L. Dabup; Arum I. Ashom; Ilya I. Kunda; Samson P. Gang; Nanpon J. Dadi and Naflsa L. Musa.
Lalong, they mentioned, gave no motive for the delay in fee or his refusal to take action.
They threatened that until he complied inside two weeks, they might file a lawsuit in opposition to him.
The letter signed by Matthew Opukumo for Chief Akintola, reads:
“We’ve got our Purchasers’ directions to the impact that by the Act which prescribes salaries and allowances for judicial officers nationwide, it’s the unique duty of the varied State Governments to supply all judicial officers roofs over their heads and guarantee ease of their mobility to wit; provision of automobiles and respectable lodging for them.
“To this finish, the state is obliged to both present a good and furnished lodging for the judges or pay them 200 per cent of their annual primary wage in lieu of lodging.
“Our Purchasers knowledgeable us additional that in Plateau State, the federal government has over time discovered it extra handy to pay judges 200 per cent of their annual primary wage yearly in lieu of lodging till the 12 months 2015 when identical stopped.
“To our Purchasers’ shock, fellow judges and judicial officers of the Customary Court docket of Enchantment have been paid their lodging allowance as much as the 12 months 2019.”
Chief Akintola acknowledged that the judges have been at nighttime as to why such therapy was meted out to them.
He mentioned “the idea for this discrimination stays unknown.
“While our Purchasers’ allowances have been left unpaid and have remained unpaid until date, the Plateau State Authorities, in an unprecedented method, went forward to pay a whopping three years’ lodging allowance prematurely to brother judges, who have been appointed in Could, 2019.”
The lawyer described the state authorities’s motion as “quite unusual, worrisome, discriminatory, unfair, discouraging and at finest described as including salt to harm.”
He mentioned the Plateau State Authorities is indebted to every of the primary 5 judicial officers for the interval of 2016 to 2020 (5 years) within the method acknowledged under:
“Annual primary wage: N1,804,740.20 (200 % of primary wage = N3,609,480.00)
“Lodging allowance for the interval of 5 years is N3,609,480.00 x 5 years = N18,047,400.”
He added: “As for our Purchasers listed in 6 & 7 above, their excellent lodging allowance is for 4 years protecting the 12 months 2017 to 2020. Therefore, the lodging allowance as a result of every of them is as acknowledged within the method under:
“N3, 609,480.00 x 4 years = N14, 437,920.
“The sum whole of the lodging allowance as a result of our Purchasers listed as 1 to five is N90,237,000.00 while that of these listed as numbers 6 to 7 is N28,875,840.
“Grand whole of lodging allowance as a result of our Purchasers is N119,112,840.
“….Sequel to the above, Your Excellency Sir, we hereby, on behalf our Purchasers demand the rapid fee of our Purchasers’ statutory entitlements inside 2 (Two) weeks of the receipt of this letter. Our Purchasers’ allowances have remained unpaid for 4 and 5 years respectively with no causes adduced for the delay in fee or its refusal.
“Your Excellency Sir, we urge you to permit good counsel prevail by paying our Purchasers’ allowances throughout the interval stipulated on this letter as we have already got our Purchasers directions to strategy a reliable court docket of regulation for redress do you have to fail to satisfy their demand as contained herein.
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