Industrial Court Dismisses Allegation of Employment Swapping Against Cross Rivers State

The Presiding Judge, Calabar Judicial Division of the National Industrial Court has dismissed Ita Bassey’s allegation of unlawful swapping of employment letter against the Cross Rivers State Government and 2 others for lacking merit in its entirety.

Justice Kado stated that Bassey’s claim of passing the interview is based on wishful thinking and not based on concrete evidence, that apart from Bassey’s list of shortlisted candidates for the interview, she has not produced any document showing her score at the interview for the court to verify the claim of the passing of interview and has not called any member of the panel that interviewed her to give evidence of her score.

From facts, the claimant- Ita Bassey had sought an order mandating the Cross River State Government to issue her a letter of employment forthwith, and the sum of N60,000,000.00 (Sixty Million Naira) as general damages/compensation for the hardship, among others.

Ita Bassey submitted that the Cross River State Government is her employer and she was engaged by the State Universal Basic Education through the online advertisement for recruitment of teachers.

She averred that she passed the interview but her appointment letter was not delivered to her even when she sighted it in the office of the State Universal Basic Education, and further alleged that it was given to someone else and all efforts to get her employment letter proved abortive.

In defence, the Cross River State Government and 2 others denied the claim of Ita Bassey of being engaged by the State Universal Basic Education and insisted that Ita Bassey neither passed the interview nor was any employment letter ever issued in her favour.

Counsel also submitted that Bassey failed to establish that she was indeed at any point in time employed by Cross River State Government, and the allegation of employment swapping was investigated by the Police and nothing of such was found, urged the court to dismiss the case in its entirety.

Delivering judgment, the Presiding Judge, Justice Sanusi Kado held that the failure of Ita Bassey to adduce credible evidence of her employment by the production of a letter of her engagement or through conduct is fatal to the case.

The Court held that Ita Bassey has failed to establish any employment relationship evidenced by any written document from which this court could look to determine the rights and obligations of the parties in the suit, and has not also been able to establish any contractual relationship by conduct between her and the Cross River State Government to warrant institution of the suit as it is presently constituted.