Court orders Mainstreet Bank To Pay Oppressed Staff N68m

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The National Industrial Court of Nigeria in Abuja Thursday ordered Mainstreet Bank Limited to pay an ex-employee, Mr Jonah Ode, N68. 96m as cumulative entitlement since 2011 after his sack.

Screen Shot 2015-07-17 at 10.09.26Justice Peter Lifu who gave the order, also declared his dismissal illegal.

Ode instituted the suit against Mainstreet Bank and Afribank Nigeria plc in 2011 over unlawful termination of his employment.

Ode who had worked for the bank for 29 years was dismissed alongside others on allegations of fraud and irregularities in the management of a customer’s account.

Specifically, Ode was said to have suppressed a customer’s post-dated cheque to service his loan.

The bank management dismissed Ode for not reporting the case on time by virtue of his position as the internal control manager of its Aba branch.

Lifu, however, held that from the evidence provided before the court, the claimant discovered the irregularities of unauthorised post-dated cheques on March.28 and reported same on April 11 after his four days leave.

The judge said the bank did not tender cogent evidence to prove the claimant’s act of gross misconduct and collusion with the other staff to carry out the fraudulent act.

He held that Ode’s dismissal was unlawful considering that the loan was given to the customer before the claimant was posted to the branch.

He ordered that the entitlement and cumulative salaries of the claimant be paid within 30 days or attract 10 per cent interest in case of default.

He also ordered the bank to reverse the blockage of the claimant’s account and that the sum of N50, 000 be paid as cost of the suit.

Lifu, however, dismissed N50 million claims as general damages, adding that there was no evidence to show the hardship the claimant went through during the cause of the suit.

NAN.