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  • Shena Security Ltd. vs. Afropak (Nig.) Ltd.
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  • 2003-05-19
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Shena Security Ltd. vs. Afropak (Nig.) Ltd.

SHENA SECURITY CO. LTD.

V

AFROPAK (NIG.) LTD.

NIGERIAN INTERCONTINENTAL MERCHANT BANK LTD.

ABIODUN AKINYEMI

COURT OF APPEAL

( IBADAN  DIVISION )

SUNDAYA. AKINTAN, JCA ( Presided and Read the Lead Judgment )

MORONKEJI OMOTAYO ONALAJA, JCA

FRANCIS FEDODE TABAI, JCA

CA/I/36/99

TUESDAY, 9TH JULY, 2002

ACTION - Civil Action - Party therein - When may be awarded interest When appropriate

MASTER AND SERVANT - Termination of Appointment - Absence of terms specifying length of notice to terminate appointment - Whether common law principles may apply

MASTER AND SERVANT - Termination of appointment - Claim for wrongful termination - Onus of proof - On whom lies - What plaintiff must prove

PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - Civil action - Party therein - When may be awarded interest - When appropriate

Issues:

1.            Whether the appellant was not entitled to more than one month’s notice (or payment in lieu thereof) for the determination of its employment with the respondent.

2.            Whether the appellant was not entitled to general damages in

the circumstances.

Facts:

The plaintiff/appellant, a limited liability company had an oral agreement to supply security men to guard the premises of the 1st respondent at Ota. According to the plaintiff/appellant in compliance with the said agreement, security men were supplied to the defendant/1st respondent with effect from November, 1991 to October, 1992 when the defendant/1st respondent abruptly terminated the agreement by ordering the security men supplied out of its premises. Consequently, the plaintiff/appellant instituted a civil suit at the lower court seeking declaratory relief and damages for the alleged wrongful termination.

The defendant/1st respondent on the other hand admitted that it entered into an oral agreement with the plaintiff company to provide security men to guard its factory premises at Ota; but due to unsatisfactory performance of the security men supplied, the said agreement had to be terminated when allegations of stealing properties of the defendant company was levelled against two of the security men supplied.

At the conclusion of hearing, the learned trial Judge having found that the agreement was wrongfully terminated granted the plaintiff’s claim for two months’ arreas of wages and granted one month’s salary as damages in lieu of notice. Dissatisfied with the lower court’s judgment, the plaintiff filed this appeal.