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Court Penalises Polytechnic, Asked To Pay N5.5m Over  Lecturer’s Rights Violation

The National Industrial Court (NIC) in Port Harcourt has asked  Captain Elechi Amadi Polytechnic in Poetharcourt, Rivere State to pay a  fume of N5.5M to a  lecturer, Zoe Tamunotonye over the violation of his rights.

 Justice Zainab Bashir, presiding over the case, mandated the polytechnic to settle all outstanding salaries and entitlements owed to Tamunotonye dating back to 2022.

The court also awarded N5 million in damages and an additional N500,000 in costs, citing the institution’s egregious violation of the lecturer’s rights. 

The ruling highlighted the unlawfulness of Tamunotonye’s suspension, which stemmed from allegations of sexual harassment without proper disclosure of investigative findings.

Justice Bashir  stated  the unconstitutional nature of the polytechnic’s actions, labeling them as a clear infringement of Tamunotonye’s fundamental rights.

 Moreover, the court warned of a 20 percent post-judgment interest if the owed sum isn’t settled within 30 days.

Tamunotonye’s legal representative, Shuaib Mustapha, emphasized the lecturer’s impeccable conduct and attributed the suspension to internal discomfort within the institution, characterizing it as a case of victimization.

 Mustapha denounced the lack of evidence presented by the polytechnic to substantiate the harassment allegations, further validating Tamunotonye’s innocence.

Following the verdict, Tamunotonye expressed the adverse impact of the salary cessation on his health and overall well-being, highlighting the personal toll of the unjust treatment endured.

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