Gabriel Omonijo, Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Federal University Oye-Ekiti (FUOYE), has dragged the institution’s management before the National Industrial Court in Akure over his indefinite suspension.
Omonijo in a suit filed on April 29 by Funmi Falana and Taiwo Olawanle from Falana and Falana’s Chambers, averred that his indefinite suspension without pay by the university was illegal and violated the provisions of the Trade Union Act.
He argued that his suspension did not follow due process as stipulated in the university’s Conditions of Service which was an embodiment of the Acts that established the institution.
The union leader said the investigative panel that recommended his suspension to the university was biased based on its prejudiced composition.
Omonijo said that his suspension without pay by the university was “wrong and unjust’’, claiming that he was only invited in respect of the allegations made in the petition by ASUU to the Minister of Education.
He stated further that the investigative panel saddled with the responsibility to investigate the allegations made in the petition to the minister turned round to place him on suspension without pay due to his position as the Chairman of ASUU in the institution.
The claimant, however, engaged the services of Falana and Falana’s Chambers which wrote the university vide a letter dated March 11, 2019 informing it of the illegality of the constitution of the investigative panel, among others.
He said that the university responded vide a letter dated March 15, and signed by the Acting Registrar, Mrs Olayinka Ajayi, stating that the issues raised in the said letter were receiving attention of the university authorities.
The union leader said that the university was yet to recall him from the suspension since Feb. 14, 2019 despite several efforts made to resolve the issues that led to his “hasty suspension.’’
Omonijo, however, sought the declaration of the court that his suspension without pay by the university authorities in letters dated Feb. 14 and Feb. 15, 2019 as null and void.
He also sought an order restraining the university from further interfering with his rights, privileges and performance of his duties as the Chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Universities(ASUU), Federal University Oye-Ekiti branch.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Omonijo is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Water Resources at the university.