By: Patrick Ochoga, Benin City
After over three years of disengagement from the services of the federal psychiatric hospital, Benin City Edo state, the presidency has directed that ten staff who were either dismissed or suspended should be recalled to the service of the hospital.
As at the time of this report yesterday, it was not clear when the directive would be implemented however information made available to Leadership indicated that management of the hospital held a closed door meeting immediately the directive was received but the decision reached was not available to the public.
However when contacted yesterday the public relation officer of the hospital, Efe Stewart said the hospital is not aware of such letter and added the suspended staff are still facing various criminal cases in court.
The letter was dated November 24th 2017 with reference number LA/80/15/T1/62 and addressed to the Medical Director of the hospital and signed by Director, Human Resource Management, Alh Halad Keana for the Honourable Minister.
The letter titled Re: Plea for our immediate reinstatement reads; “I am directed to refer to the letter from the Deputy Chief of Staff to the Vice President, Ref No SH/OVP/DCOS/LGR&C/FMOH/208 dated 28th August, 2017 on the above subject and to convey the Ministry’s approval to the immediate reinstatement of Dr A..O.Lawan and 10 others, who were suspended/dismissed from the services of the hospital on 11th November 2014.
‘You are also directed to restore the following benecita: the prompt payment of their outstanding 2013 promotion arrears, arrears of relativity and their withheld salaries up to date by virtue of Public Service Rules (PSR) 030404 (iv) which states that if confirmed than an officer is not guilty of the charge made against him/her, the rule officer shall immediately be reinstated and shall receive the full amount of his/her emoluments denied him/her while he/she was interdicted or suspended. The seniority of the officers”
It would be recalled that the affected staff were accused by the management of the hospital of various offences of insubordination that warranted their suspension and dismissal and some prosecuted.
The affected workers denied the allegations while they were arraigned in the court.
After three years of trial on alleged felony and other criminal allegations, the Egor Magistrate Court 2 in Benin City, Edo State Capital acquitted those who were charged to court hinging its judgement on the fact that the prosecution could not prove its case.