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HomeLatest newsAbbey reinstated as Rector Rivers poly

Abbey reinstated as Rector Rivers poly



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Justice Polycarp Hamman of the National Industrial Court, Port Harcourt Judicial division, has nullified the suspension of Prof. Tomunomi Abbey from office for being inconsistent with the Federal Polytechnics Act and ordered his reinstatement as the Rector of Federal Polytechnic of Oil and Gas Bonny, Rivers State.

Citing the Federal Polytechnics Amendment Act, 2019, the court held that the Governing Council of the institution had no power to suspend or discipline the Rector.

Justice Hamman further granted an order restraining the institution and its Governing Council from preventing Prof. Abbey from carrying out his lawful functions as the rector of the institution.

Prof. Abbey had submitted that he was appointed as the rector by the Minister of Education in 2018 on the authority and approval of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, in tandem with the Federal Polytechnics Act.

He argued that the Polytechnic Governing Council acted ultra vires and that he was not afforded a fair hearing before his suspension.

The defendants, the Federal Polytechnic of Oil and Gas Bonny and its Governing Council, argued that the issuance of the query to Prof. Abbey and his subsequent suspension from office were all carried out in the best interest of the Polytechnic, and based on the directive given to the Governing Council by the Minister of Education.

Delivering the judgment, the presiding Judge, Justice Hamman, held that the Governing Council acted ultra vires its powers in suspending Prof. Abbey from the office and affirmed that the office of the Rector is tenured and regulated by statute, and could not be tampered with unless as provided in the statute creating the office.

“The Defendants are hereby restrained from using the Nigeria Police, the DSS, and other security agencies to harass the claimant or from confiscating any of the properties of the 1st Defendant entrusted to his care by virtue of his position as the Rector of the 1st Defendant.” The Court ruled.

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