Dismissed immigrant lecturers withdraw Labour Court case

Port Elizabeth TVET College agrees not to retrench them

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Three immigrant lecturers whose contracts at the Port Elizabeth TVET College were terminated in January have won their case in the Labour Court. Graphic: Lisa Nelson

Three lecturers from Zimbabwe and Rwanda whose contracts were terminated in January by the Port Elizabeth TVET College have withdrawn their case today after the College agreed in the Port Elizabeth Labour Court that it will not retrench them.

A fourth lecturer who was also dismissed, who is Zimbabwean, has not been appearing in court because he has another case pending with the college.

The four have been lecturing in engineering for several years. The college management wrote letters on 12 January informing them that their services would be terminated on 1 February.

They approached the Labour Court which granted a provisional interdict in February setting aside the termination of their employment. Lawyers for the college then asked the lecturers to withdraw their case, but they refused.

They did not want to comment on their case. But Sangolinye Ngqungwana, a lecturer at the same college and shop steward for the National Union of Public Service and Allied Workers (NUPSAW), said the college had now sent the court an affidavit. “That changes the ball game completely. With the affidavit we have proof of them confirming under oath that they are not going to retrench.”

“For that reason we decided to withdraw the case.”

Deputy Principal Dorian Baartzes said the affidavit was to notify the court that the college was not opposing the case brought by the lecturers and had complied with the interdict, and that it and would comply with the Labour Regulations Act if it embarked on any retrenchment process.

TOPICS:  Immigration

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