The National Industrial Court on Thursday in Enugu ordered striking judiciary workers in the state to suspend their industrial action and resume work immediately.
It would be recalled that judiciary workers in the state had embarked on the strike to protest the failure of the state government to comply with the January 2014 judgment of Justice Adeniyi Ademola of the Federal High Court, Abuja, which granted financial autonomy for the judiciary.
Justice Auwal Ibrahim gave the order while delivering ruling on the suit filed by the Attorney General of the state, Mr Anthony Ani (SAN) against the industrial action by the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN).
Justice Ibrahim who gave the interim order pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice, also directed that the order be served on the respondents with a hearing notice and proof of service of same kept in the case file before the adjourned date.
“An interim order is hereby made against the respondents to suspend their strike pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice,’’ he said.
Justice Ademola had in the landmark judgment on January 13, 2014, declared as unconstitutional the practice of disbursing funds of state judiciaries through state governments.
According to him, the practice whereby the executive disbursed funds to the judiciary arm through the executive was in violation of Sections 83(1), 212(3) and 162(9) of the 1999 Constitution.
He had, therefore, ordered the Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF) to disburse the judiciary arm’s funds directly to the judiciary through the National Judicial Council, NJC.
More than one year after the judgment, which was not appealed, however, the AGF and some state governments have yet to comply with the order, thereby, engendering JUSUN’s directive to its members to down tools in states that refused to comply.