The Lagos State Government has lodged an appeal against the ruling of Justice Benedict Kanyip of the National Industrial Court which overruled its objection to the suit filed by the 788 medical doctors who were recently recalled to work after the initial termination of their appointments owing to a prolonged trade dispute.
The government is asking the Industrial Court to halt further proceedings in the matter pending the outcome of the appeal.
Justice Kanyip had while dismissing the government’s objection on the 24th of May held that “justice of this case demands that parties be given the opportunity to explain issues at the trial and not to shut out all enquiries at this stage”.
In a motion on notice brought pursuant to the provisions of Section 36 of the Nigerian Constitution and the inherent court’s jurisdiction, the government is seeking for an order of the court staying further proceedings in the matter pending the determination of its appeal against the said ruling.
To back up its request, the government argued that the appeal raises such substantial and arguable points of law that all further proceedings in the matter ought to be stayed until the issues are determined on appeal.
Seven grounds of appeal were formulated by the government. They include; (1) that the learned trial judge erred in law in formulating for the respondents a totally different claim from that formulated and raised by them.
(2)That the learned trial judge erred in law in not holding that there were no competent claimants before the court and consequently striking out the suit on the basis that he therefore had no jurisdiction to entertain it.
(3)That the learned trial judge erred in law in not upholding the preliminary objection and striking out the suit especially on the ground that the suit discloses no reasonable cause of action
Hearing of the motion for stay of proceedings has been fixed for the 11th of July.
The suit was instituted by both the Chairman of the Medical Guild, Olumuyiwa Odusote and the General Secretary, Idris Durojaiye, for themselves and on behalf of other members of the Guild.
Joined as defendants in the suit are: the Lagos State Government; Commissioner for Health; Lagos State Health Service Commission and the State University Teaching Hospital Management Board.