The Moment upholds dismissal of editor who asked for his right

Posted by News Express, Lagos | 5 September 2012 | 4,545 times

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A Nigerian newspaper editor who asked management to indicate how it intended to offset his salary arrears before he would hand over his official car upon his resignation has had his dismissal upheld by the company.

A Disclaimer was Monday placed on Mr. Simon Imobo-Tswam, erstwhile Abuja Bureau Editor of The Moment newspaper, by the publishers, True Moment Media Limited, Lagos.

In a full-colour quarter page advert published in the Metro Section of the paper, the management of The Moment announced that Mr. Imobo-Tswam is no longer in the company’s employ. “Anybody transacting business with him is doing so at his or her own risk,” the advert said.

As was exclusively reported by News Express on September 1, Mr. Imobo-Tswam’s ordeal started when he decided to leave The Moment, which has owed staff salaries since November last year. He had previously resigned at the beginning of the financial crisis at The Moment but was prevailed upon to rescind the decision by the Publisher, Mr. Moffat Ekoriko, thus making him to forfeit a mouth-watering offer from an Abuja-based newspaper.

However, fed up after eight months of no salaries, Mr. Imobo-Tswam submitted another resignation letter on June 22, which was accepted on August 13 but backdated to August 10. The story took another turn when the journalist asked The Moment to inform him of how they intended to pay him his accumulated salaries and other entitlements before he could return his official car.

Upon receiving the letter, The Moment wrote to Mr. Imobo-Tswam, informing him that he had been dismissed from the company.    

A shocked Mr. Imobo-Tswam contacted his lawyer, Mr. Adewale Yusuf, who wrote a Demand Letter to The Moment Publisher, Mr. Moffat Ekoriko, giving the company two weeks to pay Mr. Imobo-Tswam’s accumulated entitlements of N1.104 million or face a law suit.

“We shall at the expiration of these 14 days, file a suit in the High Court of the Federal Capital territory (FCT) which would be further enlarged with claims for special damages,” said the letter copied the FCT Abuja Police Commissioner, Director of SSS and Chairman, Abuja Council of NUJ, Mr. Imobo-Tswam also vowed to hold on to his official car until he is fully paid.

Contacted for a reaction to the disclaimer put on his head, Mr. Imobo-Tswam told News Express:

“This is a well calculated attempt to smear my hard-earned reputation. The battle-line is now drawn.”

*Photo: Moment Publisher, Moffat Ekoriko.

Source: News Express

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