Court orders payment of salaries, allowances to suspended FHA Homes boss
By Ada Anioji
Feelers reaching The Difference Newspaper, indicate that the National Industrial Court of Nigeria sitting in Abuja has presently ruled the suspension letter upon which the substantive MD/Chief Executive of FHA Homes, Mr. Roland Igbinoba, was eased out of office to be wrong.
The court presided over by His Lordship, Justice E.N Agbakoba, has subsequently ordered that his salaries and allowances even for the period of his suspension be paid to him within 30 days.
It will be recalled that Mr. Igbinoba, an astute housing finance professional, who was before now, Managing Director of PISON Housing Company, had been headhunted in April 2013 to occupy the vacant position of MD/CEO at FHA Homes, a public sector-promoted firm that was at that time posting less-than-satisfactory results.
After running the establishment for two years and succeeding in commencing the process of turning around the fortunes of the firm for good, he was to be suspended from office by the board of the FHA on June 2, 2015.
Presumably acting on the report of an ‘interim audit committee’ which it set up following receipt of a routine CBN report on the affairs of the firm, the board faulted Igbinoba’s management of the firm and ordered him to proceed on indefinite suspension pending the outcome of a forensic audit it said it would carry out to determine the full state of affairs in the establishment.
In his reaction, Igbinoba affirmed that indeed about all of the said concerns raised by the CBN audit were legacy issues that had pre-dated his emergence on the scene. Insisting also that he had done nothing wrong to warrant such unsavoury treatment and equally alleging that all of the processes leading to the decision to ease him off were improper and unfair, he then approached the supervising ministry of the Federal Capital Territory for redress and when that failed to come, proceeded to the courts in search of a remedy.
Giving judgement on the subject, the learned judge ruled that the suspension letter upon which Igbinoba was eased off his job was wrong and invalid, that Igbinoba remains the substantive MD/CEO of FHA Homes, that he remains entitled to all of his salaries and allowances, including that for the period of suspension and that additional costs of N300,000.00 be paid to him.
It remains to be seen now whether the FHA authorities, the Ministry of the Federal Capital Territory and the Federal Government would go ahead to carry out the order of court in a matter that commentators say has been so needlessly drawn out.
Mr. Roland Igbinoba