The National Industrial Court sitting in Abuja on Tuesday ordered the army to reinstate Brigadier-General Abubakar Hanafi Sa’ad.
Justice Benedict Kanyip ruled that Sa’ad’s purported compulsory retirement in 2016 and various actions against him contravened the Armed Forces Act and the Nigerian Armed Forces condition of service.
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The judge declared the retirement null and void.
Sa’ad was compulsorily retired in 2016 for what the army said was a serious offence.
But Kanyip ruled that “the purported compulsory retirement letter is hereby set aside and the defendant shall reinstate the claimant as an officer of the Nigerian Army and all the rights and privileges and his status as a Brigadier-General of the Nigerian Army up to 2019 when he would have clock 35 years in service be paid to him”.
Kanyip ordered that the defendant shall pay Sa’ad all his salaries, allowances and other privileges as a Brigadier-General since the 9, June 2016.
The court, however, rejected the prayers that he be promoted to the rank of Major-General.
Responding to the judgment, counsel to Sa’ad, Abdulrahmam Belgore, said the judgment was in order.
Sa’ad said the army was wrong to have retired him.
He said: “I was retired on the 9th of June 2016 and I went to court in September 2016 after exhausting all internal measures within the military circle.
“As you can see, the offence listed as the serious offence was not specified and that was why we got this judgment today.”