The claimant took out a complaint dated 8/11/17 and filed on the same day against the defendant seeking for the reliefs stated below: 1. A declaration of this Honourable court that the claimant is entitled to be paid her salary/remuneration accrued and due to her under her terms of appointment in the sum of N150,000.00 (One Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira) only, for the Month of March 2017. 2. An order of this Honourable court directing the defendant to pay the claimant the sum of N150,000.00 (One Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira) only as the claimant’s lawful remuneration/salary which she is entitled to receive for the month of March 2017 upon the termination of her employment by the defendant effective from 5th April 2017. 3. An order directing the defendant to pay to the claimant the sum of N1,000,000.00 (One Million Naira) only as general damages for the hardship, inconvenience, difficulties and psychological trauma caused to the claimant by the defendant’s actions. 4. An order directing the defendant to pay to the claimant the sum of N100,000.00 (One Hundred Thousand Naira) as cost of instituting this action. 5. 10% (ten percent) interest on the judgment sum due to the claimant pursuant to the order (s) of this honourable court from the date of judgment until final liquidation by the defendant. The claimant accompanied her complaint with a motion on notice dated and filed on 8/11/17, brought pursuant to Order 17 Rule 1; Order 16 Rule 1 of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (Civil Procedure) Rules, 2017. The application is praying for an order of this honourable court entering summary judgment against the defendant/respondent for all the applicant’s claims contained in the complaint and statement of facts dated 8th November 2017. Or in the alternative. An order of this honourable court entering judgment for the applicant in the sum of N150,000.00 (One Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira) as the applicant’s lawful remuneration/salary which she is entitled to receive for the Month of March 2017, upon the termination of her employment by the defendant effective from 5th April 2017. The application is supported by an affidavit of 11 paragraphs, sworn to by the claimant herself. The salient averments in the affidavit in support of the motion on notice were to the effect that, vide exhibit EB 1, the claimant was employed by the defendant as an administration officer on Monthly salary of the sum of N150,000.00 (One Hundred and Fifty Thousand Nara) only. Vide exhibit EB 3, letter dated 5th April 2017, the employment of the claimant was abruptly terminated by the defendant without any notice. As at the time the claimant’s employment was terminated, her March 2017 salary was yet to be paid. The defendant has failed or neglected to pay the claimant her March, 2017, salary despite repeated demands to that effect. The claimant reasonably believe that the defendant has no defence to this suit. In line with the rules of this court the applicant filed a written address wherein a lone issue was formulated for determination, to wit: ‘‘Whether from the facts and circumstances of this case, this honourable court should grant this application as prayed on the motion paper’’. In arguing the sole issue for determination, B. B. Lawal, Esq; counsel for the claimant/applicant submitted that the object of summary judgment is to accord the claimant the opportunity of obtaining a summary judgment without the need for a full-pledged plenary trial. Counsel referred to order 16 rule 1 of the rules of this court and submitted that the order is aimed at promptly disposing of cases that are virtually uncontested, or cases where it is clear and beyond reasonable doubt that the claimant is entitled to judgment and where it is inexpedient to allow a defendant to defend for mere purpose of delay. The application is for cases that are plain, straightforward, not for devious and crafty aim. On this contention counsel relied on SODIPO V LENIKAINEM (1986) 1 NWLR (PT.150) 229, ELFA LIMITED V CITIBANK NIGERIA & ANOR. (2-013) LPELR-20721. Counsel also referred this court to order 1 rule 4(1) and submitted that this provision is consistent with concept of summary judgment which is tailored towards the quick dispensation of justice by preventing a respondent from unnecessarily delaying a matter by bringing forth an unreasonable or sham defence. On this submission counsel relied on UNIBEN V KRAUS THOMPSON ORGANISATION LIMITED & ANOR> (2007) 14 (pt.1055) 441. It is also the submission of counsel that vide exhibit EB 1, the applicant has demonstrated the existence of the contractual arrangement i.e the contract of employment with the respondent. The contract agreement exhibit EB 1, has spelt out remuneration due and payable to the applicant. It is argued that the applicant’s case is unassailable and there is no doubt whatsoever that the applicant is entitled to judgment in the circumstance of this case is entitled to summary judgment against the respondent without the need for a full trial. In concluding his submission counsel urged the court to grant the application. COURT’S DECISION I have carefully and painstakingly perused all the processes filed in this suit as well as the application under consideration with its supporting affidavit and written address. The defendant despite being served with the originating summons commencing this suit and the motion on notice for summary judgment failed or neglected or did not to bother to even enter appearance and file defence to the action. The record of this court has shown that the defendant was served with hearing notices issued notifying the defendant with dates of sitting of the court whenever this matter is to come before the court, but, chooses to disregard the processes. B. B. Lawal, Esq; counsel for the defendant in moving this application informed the court that the application is supported with an 11 paragraphs affidavit with four exhibits attached therein and marked as exhibits EB 1 – EB 4. Counsel relied on the depositions contained in the affidavit in support and adopted the written address as his argument. In the written address counsel distilled single issue for determination, thus: ‘‘Whether from the facts and circumstances of this case the Claimant/Applicant has made out a case for grant of summary judgment’’. The present application under consideration was dated and filed on 8/11/17. The Counsel for the Claimant/Applicant submitted that parties are bound by the contract agreement they freely entered into. Counsel submitted that with the facts deposed to in the affidavit the Claimant is entitled to summary judgment as the defendant does not have any defence to the action. Counsel urged the Court to grant this application. For proper appreciation of the application under consideration, it is apt to consider the relevant provisions of Order 16 of the rules of this Court, which governed summary Judgment. The relevant provision of the Order read as follows:- ORDER – 16 – SUMMARY JUDGMENT 1. Where a Claimant believes that there is no defence to the claim, an application for summary judgment supported by an affidavit stating the grounds for the relief shall be filed along with the originating process. The application shall be accompanied with the statement of facts, any exhibits and a written brief. 2. …………………………………………... 3. ……………………………………………. 4. Where a party served with the processes and documents referred to in rule 1 of this Order intends to defend the action such a party shall, not later than the time prescribed for defence, file: (a) a statement of defence; (b) documents to be used in defence; (c) a counter–affidavit and a written brief in reply to the application for summary judgment; and (d) written statement on oath of all witnesses listed to be called by the defendant other than witnesses to be subpoenaed. 5.—(1) Where it appears to the Court that a party has a good defence and ought to be permitted to defend the claim such party may be granted leave to defend. (2) Where it appears to the Court that a party does not have a good defence the Court may thereupon enter judgment for the claimant. (3) Where it appears to the Court that the defendant or respondent has a good defence to part of the claim, the Court may thereupon enter judgment on that part of the claim to which there is no defence and grant leave to defend that part to which there is a defence. It is clear from the title of Order 16 that it was meant to govern application for summary judgment. The order makes provisions for a special procedure meant to determine a case without embarking on full scale trial of the case. This a short cut procedure of obtaining justice, to obviate the delay of going to the whole hug of full trial with its attendant cost. In determining whether to grant or refuse application for summary judgment, the court is enjoined to be guided by the overall interest of justice. See NISHIZAWA LTD V TETHWANI (1984) NSCC 877. The grant of application for summary judgment depend on the facts and circumstances of each case as presented before the Court. The application is not granted as a matter of cause, it is only granted in deserving cases. The Court has no discretion to exercise. Thus, why the court in considering application for summary judgment is duty bound to consider all the facts of the case and the processes filed including not only the statement of facts but also the statement of defence. The Court has a duty to give consideration to the defence vis-à-vis the statement of claim as well as affidavit filed in support or against the application, if any. See FEDERAL MILITARY GOVERNMENT V SANI (1990) 7 SC (pt.ii) 89. Where the defence raised a bona fide defence, the Defendant should not be shut out. However, court must not allow a sham defence, aimed at gaining time and prolong litigation under this procedure. The reason being that the procedure for summary judgment are devices available for prompt and expeditious disposal of controversy without trial when there is no dispute as to either material facts or inferences to be drawn from undisputed facts or only if question of law is involved. The rationale is for disposing of case with dispatch, cases which are virtually uncontested. See UBA PLC & ANR. V ALHAJI BABANGIDA JARGABA (2007) 5 SCNJ 127, BONA V TEXTILE LTD V ASABA TEXTILE MILL PLC (2012) 12 SC (pt.1) 25. In BELOXXI INDUSTRIES LTD & ANOR. V HWA THAI INDUSTRIES BERHARD LTD (2011) LPELR-3867, (CA), the Court of Appeal while rationalising the procedure for summary judgment has this to say:- ‘‘The concept of summary judgment by nature is one given in favour of the plaintiff without a plenary trial of the action. In other words, the conventional normal procedure requiring the filing of all necessary pleadings, hearing evidence of witnesses and addresses by counsel and upon which a judgment is given are bypassed and not followed. Rather the material upon which such a judgment is based are the writ of summons, the statement of claim, and also the plaintiff’s application for judgment by way of a motion or summons which is supported by an affidavit. A statement of defence could also at times be an additional material accompanied as well as counter affidavit by the Defendant. the procedure serves a quick measure for disposing with dispatch, cases which are uncontested and thus precluding frivolous defences for purpose of mere delay’’. From the quoted provisions of Order 16 Rule 1, above, it clear that a Claimant who believes that there is no defence to the claim, can file an application for summary judgment supported by an affidavit stating the grounds for the belief. The application shall be filed along with the originating process. The application shall be accompanied with the statement of facts, any exhibits and a written brief. The provisions of Rule 1 of Order 16 of the Rules of this Court is very clear and unambiguous as to what is required of a Claimant that believes that there is no defence to his Claim. For the Defendant he is by virtue of Order 16 Rule 4 (a), (b), (c) and (d) of the Rules of this Court required to upon being served with the processes stated in Rule 1 of Order 16 of the Rules of this Court, if he intend to defend the action shall not later than 14 days which is the time for filing defence, file a statement of defence, documents to be used in defence, a counter–affidavit and a written brief in reply to the application for summary judgment; and written statement on oath of all witnesses listed to be called by the defendant other than witnesses to be subpoenaed. When the parties have complied with the provisions of order 16 Rules 1 and 4, the Court is enjoined by the provisions of Order 16 Rule 5(1), where it appears to the Court that a party has a good defence and ought to be permitted to defend the claim such party may be granted leave to defend. However, by virtue of Order 16 Rule 5(2) where it appears to the Court that a party does not have a good defence the Court may thereupon enter judgment for the claimant. From the clear and unambiguous provisions of order 16 of the rules of this Court, I have no doubt in my mind that both parties and the Court have a duty to perform in respect of application for summary judgment. The fulfilments of the duties will emerged upon consideration of the facts before the Court. The Claimant filed this application along with his Originating processes as required by Order 16. However, a careful perusal of the motion on notice filed by the Claimant will revealed that the motion was supported by affidavit sworn to by the Claimant herself, wherein she made reference to four Exhibits. The motion was also accompanied with a written address in aid of the application. It is also apparent that the motion on notice was not accompanied by statement of facts as required by the provisions of Order 16 Rule 1. However, it should be noted that the originating process filed by the Claimant before the Court on 8/11/17, comprised of a General form of Complaint, statement of facts, witness statement on oath, photo copy of letter of offer of appointment as Exhibit EB 1, photocopy of letter of demand exhibit EB 4, dated 14/6/17, these are the documents that accompanied the motion on notice for summary judgment. Albeit, the motion for summary judgment did not strictly conform with the requirement of Order 16 Rule 1 of the Rules of this Court that require the application to be accompanied with statement of facts. Since a statement of facts has been filed accompanying the complaint and is before the court, I shall consider lack of attaching statement of facts to the application for summary judgment as an irregularity. See order 5 rule 1 of the rules of this court. The defendant did not file any process in this matter, no attempt whatsoever has been made by the defendant to show interest in defending this matter. In the circumstances in the absence of any counter-affidavit to controvert of contradict the claimant’s affidavit in support of the motion on notice, I have no choice than to accept the deposition in the affidavit in support of the motion on notice as true. There is no counter-affidavit filed along with the processes as required to be filed by the provisions of Order 16 Rule 4(c) of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (Civil Procedure) Rules 2017. In an application supported by an affidavit, for the Respondent to adequately respond to the issues raised in the affidavit he is duty bound to file a counter-affidavit to controvert and contradict what was averred in the affidavit in support. Where the party that has a duty to controvert or contradict facts deposed to in an affidavit failed or neglected to act accordingly, the abdication of the duty by the party will justify the inference that those averments had been admitted and accept as true facts and the court will be justified to act on those uncontroverted averments. DOKUBO-ASARI V FRN (2009) 37 NSCQR 1146, EX-PARTE ADESINA (1996) 4 NWLR (PT.442) 254, AG ANAMRA STATE V OKEKE (2012) 12 NWLR (PT.782) 575, STEPHEN LAWSON-JACK V THE SHELL PETROLEUM DEVELOPMENT COMPANY OF NIGERIA LTD (2002) 13 NWLR (PT.783) 180. However, the mere fact that averments in an affidavit are deemed to have admitted cannot bar the Court from securitizing those averments to ascertain their cogency. The refusal or neglect by Counsel for the Defendant to file Counter-affidavit as required of him as far Order 16 Rule 4(c) of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria Rules 2017, clearly shows that Counsel has nothing to counter or contradict. This means Counsel has accepted and admitted the Claimant’s affidavit in support as the truth of the facts in this application. From the originating Court process commencing this suit as well as the affidavit in support of the motion on notice for summary judgment, the Claimant’s case is hinged on offer of appointment, letter of termination of appointment, letter of demand. A scrutiny of the exhibits will revealed that there is contract of employment between the claimant and the defendant on payment of N150,000.00 Monthly salary. The claimant’s employment was determined exhibit EB 3, on 5th April 2017, before she was paid her March 2017 salary, thus why this action to claim the one month accrued salary and damages. In view of the absence of challenge to the claimant’s application, I shall without any hesitation grant the application of the claimant for summary judgment. From all I have been saying above the claimant is entitle to summary judgment only to the extent stated hereunder:- The defendant is hereby directed to pay to the claimant The sum of N150,000.00 (One Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira), being unpaid salary of the claimant for the Month of March 2017. The claim for payment of the sum of N1,000,000.00 (One Million Naira) being general damages for the hardship, inconvenience, difficulties and psychological trauma caused to the claimant by the defendant’s action cannot be granted in the absence of full trial. The defendant is hereby directed to pay the sum of N100,000.00 (One Hundred Thousand) Naira, to the claimant as cost. All sums payable under this judgment shall be paid within 21 days from today. Failure to pay within 21 days shall attract interest in the sum of 10% per annum until full payment. Summary judgment entered accordingly. Sanusi Kado, Judge.