The National Industrial Court of Nigeria on Tuesday ordered Kano state government to redeploy 894 health workers, under the Hospital Management Board, and refund the salaries that have been deducted for 27 months.
The state government, in a circular 11/2016, dated September 6, 2016, through the office of the Head of Civil Service, ordered the deployment of the workers to other agencies, and change of their salary scale from Consolidated Health Salary Structure (CONHESS) to Harmonised Public Service Salary Structure (HAPSS).
However, the affected workers, under Nigerian Civil Service Union, Kano Hospital Management Board Chapter, on July 3, 2017, filed a lawsuit to challenge the state government decision at the industrial court.
The plaintiffs, through their counsel, Surajo Sabo Ali, told the court that, being employees of Kano State Hospital Management Board, they are entitled to continue enjoying their salary structure of CONHESS.
They complained that having been employed by the State Hospital Management Board, pursuant to Hospital Management Board edict 1995, they are not subjected to any circular or directives given by the Head of Service.
They further averred that the Kano Hospital Management Board is a body established by the law of Kano State, saddled with the responsibility and powers to recruit, employ, train, transfer and promote its employees.
The complainants argued that they are subject to transfer within the zonal office of the Kano State Hospital Management Board, and their transfer is within its powers, not the Head of Service.
They further stated that, as a result of the issuance of the circular, they were affected negatively to the effect of a transfer and posting out of Kano State Hospital Management Board and its zone.
The plaintiffs, however, prayed the court to declare the circular as void and of no effect whatsoever to them.
The affected workers include administrative officers, executive officers (admin), confidential secretaries, computer operators, accounts, storekeepers, engineering, technical, superintendents and planning officers /assistants.
Delivering the judgment, Judge E. Isiele ordered Kano state government to redeploy the affected workers back to their former station and refund all their deducted salaries from the period under review.
Speaking after the judgement, the plaintiffs counsel, Barr. Surajo Ali, expressed happiness over the outcome.
He also thanked the judge for granting 5 out of 6 of their prayers.
On his part, the defence counsel, Mukhtar Sani Daneji, said there were errors in the judgement which they need to study.