IN THE NATIONAL INDUSTRIAL COURT OF NIGERIA
IN THE BENIN JUDICIAL DIVISION
HOLDEN AT BENIN
DATED THIS: 17TH NOVEMBER, 2020
SUIT NO: NICN/BEN/38/2019
HON. SOLOMON EMIOHE …………………........………………. CLAIMANT
ESAN NORTH-CENTRAL LOCAL
Prince Edobor Izebhigie Esq. for the claimant
C.U. Ibhafidon Esq. for the defendant
1. The claimant instituted this suit vide a complaint dated and filed 22nd November, 2019 whereby he seeks the following reliefs against the defendant:
a) A declaration that the claimant is entitled to the immediate release and payment of the sum of N1, 859,168.00 (One million eight hundred and fifty-nine thousand, one hundred and sixty-eight naira) being the balance of the claimant’s full severance gratuity found due to him having been paid N700,000 (seven hundred thousand naira) only.
b) A declaration that the claimant is entitled to the payment of the sum of N599,688.00 (five hundred and fifty-nine thousand, sic hundred and eighty-eight naira) being the balance of arrears of salaries owed the claimant while he was in office having been paid N200,000.00 (two hundred thousand naira) only.
c) An order compelling the defendant to release forthwith and pay up in full the balance of N1, 859,168.00 (One million eight hundred and fifty-nine thousand, one hundred and sixty eight naira) being the claimant’s severance monetary benefit in accordance with the binding Edo State Political and Public Officers Emolument Law in force.
d) An order compelling the defendant to pay up the arrears of salaries of N599,688.00 (five hundred and fifty-nine thousand, six hundred and eighty-eight naira) being the balance of arrears of salaries owed the claimant while he was in office having been paid N200,000 (two hundred thousand naira).
e) The sum of N8,000,000 (eight million naira) being the defendant’s indebtedness to the claimant as entertainment allowances from 1st April, 2013 to 31st March, 2016 due to the claimant as provided.
f) The sum of N762,500.00 (seven hundred and sixty-two thousand, five hundred naira) being the defendant’s indebtedness to the claimant as duty tour allowances (DTA).
g) The sum of N1,120,000 (One million one hundred and twenty thousand naira) as out pocket expenses (OPE) being the defendant’s indebtedness to the claimant.
h) Interest on the total sum of Severance Gratuity, Arrears of Salaries, Entertainment, Duty Tour Allowances (DTA) and Out of Pocket Expenses above making N12,301,306.00 (twelve million, three hundred and one thousand, three hundred and six naira) at the rate of 20% until the sum is liquidated.
i) N500,000 (Five Hundred Thousand Naira) only for cost of action and legal fees.
2. The claimant’s case as stated in his statement of facts is that he was an elected vice-chairman of Esan North-Central Local Government Council from 22nd April, 2013 to 21st April, 2016. He pleaded that he was on an annual basic salary of N835,056.00k and entitled to severance gratuity of N2,559,168.00 (300% of his annual basic salary) at the end of his tenure. The claimant in this suit is claiming the balance of; salaries, severance gratuity and his full entertainment allowance after successfully completing his tenure.
3. He pleaded that consequent upon the refusal of the defendant to pay his entitlements, after several demands, he instructed his solicitor to write the defendant of his intention to approach the court for the recovery of his entitlements. Wherefore, he claims against the defendant as aforestated.
4. The defendant filed its statement of defence and accompanying process on 27th February, 2020 and same was deemed properly filed by an order of this court on 18th March, 2020. The defendant denied all material allegations in the statement of facts and averred that all the documents frontloaded by the claimant in respect of travelling allowance are fake and were produced in anticipation of this suit.
5. The defendant further contended that the claimant is not entitled to the reliefs sought and urged the court to dismiss the entire suit.
6. The claimant filed a reply to the statement of defence dated 23rd March, 2020, where he pleaded that all documents and vouchers frontloaded by him were prepared and audited by the defendant, he added that same were signed by the head of administration after approval from the executive committee of the defendant. He pleaded further that the defendant is in custody of the vouchers for underpaid salaries and severance payment and gave the defendant notice to produce same, whereby he contended that the defendant has no defence to this suit.
7. Trial commenced in this suit on 23rd July, 2020 with the claimant testifying as CW1, he adopted his witness statement on oath and tendered some documents that were admitted and marked Exhibits SM1-SM4 (i-xiii), he was duly cross-examined and the claimant closed his case. On 24th July, 2020, the defendant called Gladys Edoigiawerie, a Legal Officer with the defendant as DW1, she adopted her written deposition, did not tender any document and was cross-examined. The defence closed its case and the court adjourned for adoption of final written addresses. In line with the Practice Directions of this Court, 2020 and pursuant to the defence counsel’s letter dated 7th August, 2020 and claimant’s counsel’s letter dated 31st August, 2020, filed along with their written addresses, the addresses were deemed properly adopted on 11th September, 2020.
8. C.U. Ibhafidon Esq. of counsel for the defendant in his final written address dated 11th August, 2020 and filed on 12th August, 2020, submitted one issue for determination, viz:
Whether the Claimant’s claim for pension, gratuity, salaries arrears, severance monetary benefit and other post-office entitlement are not qualified as special damages.
9. On the sole issue, learned defence counsel submitted that a claim for pension, gratuity, salaries arrears, severance, monetary benefit and other post -employment entitlements all qualify as special damages, which must be pleaded, particularized and proved. He submitted that where a Claimant fails to plead and prove special damages, the claim must fail.
10. He pointed out that the Claimant failed to specifically plead and particularize his claim for out of pocket expenses and other entitlements and cited U.B.N Plc vs. Nwankwo & Anor (2020) vol. 300 LRCN pg. 223. He urged the court to dismiss the claim of the Claimant having failed to comply with strict requirement of proving a claim of this nature.
11. Learned counsel argued that the Edo State Political and Public Officers Emolument Law 2001 is null and void, illegal and unconstitutional, and also morally wrong. He referred the court to the decision of court of Appeal in Appeal No: CA/A/810/2017 Governor of Kogi State & 3 Ors (Unreported) (the full title was not stated in the defence counsel’s written address), and urged the Court to dismiss the Claimant’s case with cost.
12. Prince Edobor Izebhigie Esq. of counsel for the claimant in his adopted written address dated and filed on 31st August, 2020, submitted one issue for determination, to wit:
13. Whether from the evidence led, Exhibits tendered and the position of the law, the Claimant has been able to prove his case to be entitled to the reliefs sought.
14. Learned counsel submitted that by virtue of Section 131(1) of the Evidence Act, 2011, the burden of establishing facts upon which legal rights and liabilities accrue, is on the party who asserts those facts, therefore the burden of proof in this case rests on the claimant. He cited Apena V. Aileru (2015) 24 WRN 1 and continued that the Claimant has discharged this duty in his evidence and the exhibits tendered before the Court.
15. Learned counsel noted that the defendant acknowledged and paid
N200,000.00 and N700,000.00 as part-payment of the entitlements as reflected in Exhibit SM2, and had promised to pay the balance. He added that the facts pleaded by the Claimant were not denied by the defendant, and are therefore deemed admitted, he relied on Hilary Farms Ltd & Ors. V. M/V Malitra & Ors. (2007) 6 SC (pt. 11) 85.
16. The claimant’s counsel relied on Edo State Political and Public Officers Emolument Law 2001 and submitted that the Claimant having successfully completed his tenure and disengaged honorably from office, is entitled to his severance gratuity. He further submitted that since the Claimant has discharged the initial burden of proof, the burden has shifted to the defendant. He cited Section 133(1) and (3) of the Evidence Act, 2011 and Mrs. Pauline Asika & 3 ors. V Charles Chukwuma Atunanya (2008) 17 NWLR (pt. 117) 484
17. He contended that the evidence led by the defence has not in any way disproved or discredited the evidence led by the Claimant and maintained that since it is the defendant’s contention that Exhibit SM4 (i-xiii) are fake and was prepared in anticipation of this case, it bears the burden to prove the assertions. Learned counsel placed reliance on Section 136 of the Evidence Act, 2011 and the case of Amadi V. Amadi (2017) 7 NWLR (pt. 1563) 108.
18. According to counsel, the defendant’s denial of the claims in this suit is at best evasive, he relied on UBA PLC V Jargaba (2007) 11 NWLR (pt. 1045) 247. He added that the Claimant is entitled to an award of post judgment interest and cost of this action as the Defendant did not deny, challenge or discredit this head of his claim which was supported by receipt (Exhibit SM3). On this he further placed reliance on Hilary Farms Ltd & Ors. V. M/V Malita & Ors. (Supra) and Order 55 Rule 5 of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (Civil Procedure Rules) 2017.
19. The claimant’s counsel urged the court to discountenance the unreported case (CA/A/810/2017) cited by the Defendant, as it was uncertified, and relied on Order 45 Rule 3(1) and (2) of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (Civil Procedure Rules) 2017. In conclusion, counsel urged the Court to grant all the reliefs sought by the Claimant.
20. I have carefully read all the processes filed by the parties, listened to the evidence led as well as the final submissions of counsel on both sides, and thereafter settled on a sole issue for the determination of this case to wit:
Whether or not the claimant has established his case on the preponderance of evidence to be entitled to the reliefs sought in this suit.
21. There is no doubt that the claimant in this suit bears the initial burden of proving his case going by the provisions of Sections 131, 132 and 133 of the Evidence Act, 2011.
22. The claimant in discharge of this burden testified as CW1, and tendered several documents marked Exhibits SM1-SM4 (i-xiii), while the defendant solely relied on the evidence of DW1 in support of its defence and did not tender any document.
23. The claimant established the fact that he served as an elected Vice-Chairman in the defendant between 22nd April, 2013 to 21st April, 2016, since this fact was uncontroverted by the defendant and claims his accrued entitlements which are yet unpaid by the defendant. The area of conflict between the parties from the case before this court is, whether or not the claimant is entitled to the various sum claimed as his unpaid benefits such as entertainment allowance, severance gratuity, duty tour allowance and out of pocket expenses.
24. The claimant in pursuit of his claim for the benefits placed reliance on the Edo State Political and Public Officers Emolument Law 2001 while the defendant contended that the cited law is unconstitutional and morally wrong.
25. It is worthy of note that the defendant by its contention is not contesting the existence of the above law, but rather its validity. A thorough scrutiny of this law reveals that in Part II Schedule 2 the annual basic salary for the office of the vice-chairman (i.e. claimant) is specified as
N853,056.00 (Eight Hundred and Fifty-Three Thousand and Thirty-Six Naira) and it is also so stated that vice-chairmen will be entitled to 300% of their annual basic salary as their severance gratuity upon completion of their tenure. A calculation of 300% of N853,056.00(annual salary of the claimant) is calculated as:
N853,056.00 x 300
N2, 559, 168
26. The claimant in paragraph c of his reliefs is claiming the sum of
N1,859,168 (One Million, Eight Hundred and Fifty-Nine Thousand, One Hundred and Sixty Eight Naira) as severance gratuity. The defendant in its argument against the grant of this relief relied on the decision of the court of Appeal in Appeal No: CA/A/810/2017 Governor of Kogi State & 3 Ors (Unreported) (the full title was not stated in the defence counsel’s written address), and argued that the Edo State Political and Public Officers Emolument Law 2001 is not only void but also morally wrong. The authority relied on by the defendant in this instance is an unreported suit of which the certified true copy was not tendered before this court in compliance with Order 45 Rule 3 of the National Industrial Court (Civil Procedure) Rules, 2017, which provides that:
“(1) All Written Addresses shall be concluded with a numbered summary of the points raised and the party’s prayer. A list of all authorities referred to shall be submitted with the Written Address. Where any unreported judgment is relied upon, the Certified True Copy shall be submitted along with the Written Address.
(2) Failure to comply with rules 2 and 3(1) of this Order may render the written Address incompetent.”
27. Learned defence counsel by the above provision is expected to attach the cited Judgment to his written address having referred to the case in his final address. The failure to attach a C.T.C of this authority renders it incompetent, moreover it is trite that every case is decided by the primacy of the facts available in each case. It is for the above reason that I hereby discountenance the authority cited by the defence counsel in this regard.
28. Further on this, the Edo State Political and Public Officers Emolument Law 2001 is a valid Law passed by the body constitutional empowered to make such laws i.e. the Edo State House Assembly. It is trite that it is the duty of court to apply the law to the facts and circumstances of each case in order to attain justice and nothing more. See Edet v. Chagoon (2008) 2 NWLR (Pt. 1070) 85 at P. 104. para. H, where Ngwuta JCA, held thus:
"The duty of a Judge is to interpret and apply the provisions of the law validly made by competent constitutional authority to the facts and circumstances of the matter in controversy before the court."
29. Garba JCA also held in Kanjal v. Ifop (2013) LPELR-22158(CA) that:
30. "The primary duty of the High Court and indeed all courts of law is to interprete and apply the relevant laws to the facts and circumstances of a case in the determination of disputes between parties…”
31. Furthermore, this court is enjoined to take judicial notice of enacted laws, see Section 122(2) (a & b) of the Evidence Act, 2011 which provides that:
“The court shall take judicial notice of-
(a) all laws or enactments and any subsidiary legislations made under them having the force of law now or previously in force in any part of Nigeria;
(b) all public Acts or Laws passed or to be passed by the National Assembly or a State House of Assembly, as the case may be, and all subsidiary legislation made under them and all local and personal Acts or Laws directed by the National Assembly or a state House of Assembly to be judicially noticed.”
32. It is on record that DW1, while testifying under cross-examination admitted that the claimant is entitled to severance benefits, in her words:
“The claimant is by law entitled to severance entitlement”
33. It therefore beats reason and imagination that the defense counsel is contending that the claimant is not entitled to severance benefits because the law under which he is claiming is invalid. It is beyond debate that a party can rely on the evidence adduced from the other party’s witness which supports his own case. See Opawunmi & Anor. v Oni (2011) LPELR-4106(CA) where Ngwuta JCA held that:
“A party can provide evidence in support of his case by calling witnesses or by evidence extracted from his opponent’s witness in cross-examination.”
34. Likewise, Ogundare JSC held in Orinawo & Ors. v Okene & Ors (2002) LPELR-2759(SC) that:
“It is trite that plaintiffs are entitled to take advantage of evidence of the defendants that support their case.”
35. The claimant avers that the defendant has paid only N700,000.00 out of his total severance gratuity, this fact was uncontested and therefore deemed admitted by the defendant. A deduction of N700,000 from N2, 559, 168.00 due leaves a balance of N1,859,168 (One Million Eight Hundred and Fifty-Nine Thousand, One Hundred and Sixty-Eight Naira) yet unpaid, the claimant is therefore entitled to the sum of N1,859,168 (One Million Eight Hundred and Fifty-Nine Thousand, One Hundred and Sixty-Eight Naira) as balance of his severance gratuity to be paid by the defendant. I so hold.
36. On the claim for balance of salary arrears, entertainment allowance, duty tour allowance and out of pocket expenses, I find that these qualify as special damages, which by law must be specifically pleaded and proved. In other words it must be proved by exact arithmetic computation. See I.B.W.A. Ltd (Now Afribank Plc) v Hotel Metropole International Ltd. & Anor. (2010) LPELR-4272(CA) where Tsamiya JCA held that:
“…Special Damages are in a class of their own requiring strict proof which can only be proved/established by credible and ascertainable facts which must have been specifically pleaded and of course strictly proved.”
37. The claimant in this instance pleaded and led evidence to the effect that his monthly basic salary is N71,088 While his annual basic salary is N853,056. The claimant went further to plead and lead evidence that the defendant earlier paid a sum of N200,000 (two hundred thousand naira) out of the his arrears of salary and still owes him a sum of N559,688 (five hundred and fifty-nine thousand, six hundred and eighty-eight naira) as the balance of arrears of salaries. The claimant however did not plead and lead evidence on the exact months covered by the amount he is claiming and how he arrived at that amount. This I find is very necessary especially when one considers that this is a claim in special damages which demands the break-down of such a claim. In this regard therefore, it is immaterial that the defendant did not contest the claimant’s assertion, as special damages by its nature must be proved concisely, cogently and specifically. In the face of the claimant’s failure to satisfy the standard of proof required for a claim in special damages, I find that the claim for the arrears of salaries fails as same is unproven and unsubstantiated. I so hold.
38. In respect of Entertainment allowance, duty tour allowance and out of pocket expenses, the claimant neither pleaded any fact nor led any evidence linking or creating a proper foundation for Exhibits SM4(i) – SM4(xiii) in pursuit of this claim. The claimant in claiming a sum of N8 million as Entertainment allowance for his entire tenure i.e. April, 2013 to February, 2016, merely dumped the Exhibits before this court, without connecting the evidence led to these Exhibits. It is the law as held in a plethora of cases that a party who tenders a document in evidence bears the burden of relating such documents to facts which they seek to establish. That is to say, It is not the duty of court to link documents to particular facts sought to be established by a party see ACN v Lamido & Ors. (2012) LPELR-7825(SC) where Fabiyi JSC held that:
“The basic aim of tendering documents in bulk was to ensure speedy trial and hearing of election petition. But that does not exclude proper evidence to prop such dormant documents."
39. In the same vein, Agim JCA held in ADEWALE & Anor. v. ADEOLA & Ors. (2015) LPELR-25972(CA) that:
“… It is not the duty of a court or tribunal to embark upon cloistered justice by making enquiries into the case outside the open court not even by examination of documents which were in evidence but not examined in the open court. A judge is an adjudicator, not an investigator. The appellant other than tendering those documents, did not endeavour through its witnesses to link them up with the specific areas of the petition. Needless to restate that it was not the duty of trial tribunal judges to undertake that assignment in the comfort of their chambers. The law is trite that the tendering of a document by a party and the purport for which it is tendered cannot be left a subject of speculation.”
40. The only document relied on by the claimant before this court in respect of the Entertainment allowance is the extract of the minutes of the meeting of the defendant’s executive council i.e. Exhibit SM4(x) where the Entertainment allowance of the claimant as vice chairman was fixed at N250,000.00 per month. A meticulous perusal of the provision of Part II Schedule 2 of Edo State Political and Public Officers Emolument Law 2001 which provides for the emolument of Local Government Political Office Holders, (the claimant inclusive) reveals in the column for entertainment allowance for vice- chairmen the following “to be provided”. There is however nowhere in the above cited law where a monthly sum of N250,000.00 was provided as entertainment allowance for the office of either the chairman or the vice chairman. How the executives of the defendant derived the power to fix the entertainment allowance was not disclosed before this court, and it is therefore safe to say that there is no provision of the law by the body responsible for fixing the emoluments of elected Local Government officials in Edo State i.e. the Edo State House of Assembly to back up the claim for monthly Entertainment allowance of N250,000.00 for the claimant in this case. Also, there is nothing to support how the defendant’s executive council derived the power to fix entertainment allowance for the chairman and vice-chairman of the defendant from the evidence available in this case.
41. Assuming even that the Executive Council of the defendant possessed the power to make provisions for Entertainment allowance as done in this case, the authenticity of Exhibits SM4 (i) – SM4 (xiii) were disputed by the defendant, and the probative value to be attached to these documents especially in the face of this denial must be examined. It is on record that Exhibit SM4 (x) was tendered and produced from the custody of the claimant and the extract was admitted in evidence by this court, however, the probative value to be attached to this Exhibit is another issue. In ACN v Lamido (supra) Fabiyi JSC held that:
“There is a dichotomy between admissibility of documents and the probative value to be placed on them. While admissibility is based on relevance, probative value depends not only on relevance but also on proof. Evidence has probative value if it tends to prove an issue.”
42. In concluding on the probative value to be attached to an exhibit, there are certain factors to be considered by the court as laid out by Garba JCA in Godwin I. Usen v. State (2012) LPELR-20063(CA) where his lordship held that:
“Factors that are usually taken into account by a court in the determination of the weight or probative value to be ascribed to a piece of evidence are:
a) admissibility of the evidence
c) credibility of the evidence
d) probability of the evidence in relation to the facts of the case
e) conclusiveness on the proved facts of the case.
43. One of the core considerations in ascribing probative value to a document is credibility and in determining the credibility of a document, proper custody plays an important role. In OGBUNYIYA & ORS V. OKUDO & ORS (1979) LPELR-2295(SC), IDIGBE, J.S.C held that:
“What after all, is meant by the expression "proper custody" of a document? It means no more than "its deposit with a person and in a place where, if authentic, it might naturally and reasonably be expected to be found" and "proof of production from proper custody is required not as a ground for reading the document" (as appears from the judgment of the Court of Appeal to be in their contemplation) "but to afford the Judge reasonable assurance of it as being what it purports to be.” See also Section 156 of the Evidence Act, 2011.
44. Furthermore, Section 106 (d) of the Evidence Act, 2011 provides that:
“106. The following public documents may be proved as follows-
(d) the proceeding of a Local Government Council, by the minutes of that body or by published bye-laws, or by copies purporting to be printed by order of the local government.”
45. There is no doubt that the minutes of the executive council of the defendant, is a public document which forms part of the record of the Executive arm of the Local Government, which by its nature is expected to be in the custody of the Local Government. The claimant in his evidence when questioned by the court on how he came about the original documents of the defendant, stated that he got hold of the documents in his capacity as Vice Chairman of the defendant. A cursory examination of Exhibit SM4 (x) reveals that this document was neither authenticated nor certified as the official record of the defendant by the appropriate officer who in law retains proper custody of such documents. Furthermore, even though the Exhibit was apparently signed by the chairman and Vice- Chairman, there are crossings on these documents which were not explained, added to the fact that same was not produced by the public officer who is the legal custodian or authenticated by him as required under Section 104 of the Evidence Act, 2011. The foregoing in no small measure raises a doubt as to the authenticity of Exhibit SM4 (x) as a result of which same lacks probative value in proof of the claim for Entertainment allowance by the claimant. I so hold.
46. Consequent upon the reasoning above, I find that the claimant has failed to establish his claim for Entertainment allowance based on the preponderance of the evidence adduced by him as a result of which the claim fails and is hereby refused. I so hold.
47. The defendant also contested the claimant’s entitlement to duty tour allowance and out of pocket expenses in paragraph 6 of its statement of defence thus:
“That in answer to paragraph 7, the duty tour allowance and out of pocket expenses claimed are not true and that the claimant never embarked on any duty tour he is claiming.”
48. In the face of the denial of the claim as above, it falls on the claimant to plead and lead cogent evidence to support his claim. A look at the reliefs itself disclosed that same were not particularised, specific and proved by cogent evidence as required in a claim for special damages The duty tours embarked on and out of pocket expenses expended were not specifically stated and there is no evidence or deposition to back up the claim. As earlier stated in this Judgment, a party cannot dump documents as exhibits before the court without tying the document to his testimony as it is not the duty of court to fish through documents to make a case for a party. Thus this court cannot go on an investigative spree to discover the particulars of the duty tours and out of pocket expenses claimed by the claimant in proof of his case from the bundle of documents dumped in this case.
49. At the risk of sounding repetitious see Lumatron (Nig) Ltd & Anor v. FCMB (2016) LPELR-41409(CA), where Garba JCA held that:
“it is the duty of a party who tendered or put a document in evidence in support of the case he makes before a Court to specifically, by way of oral or other pieces of evidence in the case, relate, link up or tie the said document to the particular part of the case in respect of which it was tendered by him, for such a document be properly evaluated and ascribed probative value by the Court. The principle also postulates that it is not the business, let alone a duty of the Court in the absence of such link from the evidence of the party tendering the document, to investigate the document and look for the purpose for which it was tendered by seeking out the part of the case which it supports. Where no evidence was proffered to directly link a document to the part of the case it was tendered to support by a party, it is said that the party did not talk to the document in the case and so merely dumped it on the Court by putting it in evidence.”
50. In light of the claimant’s failure to plead and prove the particulars of the duty tour allowance and out of pocket expenses claimed in this suit, I find that these claims were not established before this court and same are unsustainable and are hereby refused. I so hold.
51. On the issue of cost, the general rule is that cost follows event and a successful party is entitled to cost. This award is at the discretion of the Court which must be exercised judicially and judiciously.
52. I have considered the facts and circumstances of this suit, and I am satisfied that the claimant in this case is entitled to cost of this action.
53. In conclusion, I find that the claimant’s action succeeds in part and for the sake of clarity, I hereby declare and order as follows:
a) The claimant is entitled to the payment of a sum of N1, 859,168.00 (One million eight hundred and fifty-nine thousand, one hundred and sixty eight naira) being the balance of his full severance gratuity due and yet unpaid.
b) The defendant is ordered to release the balance of N1, 859,168.00 (One million eight hundred and fifty-nine thousand, one hundred and sixty eight naira) due to the claimant as severance gratuity.
c) The claimant’s reliefs b, d, e, f, g and h fails.
d) The sum awarded in this judgment is to be paid by the defendant within 30 days from the date of this judgment, failing which the sum shall attract a 10% interest per annum.
A cost of N200,000.00 is hereby awarded to the claimant to be paid by the defendant.
Judgment is accordingly entered
HON. JUSTICE A.A. ADEWEMIMO