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Gvt ordered to reinstate teacher dismissed for forcing female pupils to wash dishes

by Staff Reporter
13 Apr 2016 at 06:20hrs | Views
THE Bulawayo Labour Court has ordered the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Lazarus Dokora, to reinstate a teacher who was dismissed for allegedly inviting a Tfemale pupil to his bedroom for dishwashing chores during study hours.

The Worker reported that the teacher, Future Ngwenya was also said to have given the school girl doughnuts as a token of appreciation for the job.

Ngwenya was employed as a teacher at Sigonde Secondary School in Umguza district before he was relieved of his duties last year. He was charged with misconduct and contravening paragraphs 4 and 7 of the first schedule of the Public Service Regulations during a disciplinary hearing.

Ngwenya through his lawyers, Munyaradzi Gwisai and Partners Ngwenya filed an application at the Labour Court challenging his dismissal where he cited minister Dokora as the respondent.

In her ruling Justice Evangelista Kabasa of the Bulawayo Labour Court ordered the Ministry of Education to compensate Ngwenya for the entire period he went without a salary following his dismissal.

Justice Kabasa ruled that the disciplinary authority erred and misdirected itself in finding Ngwenya guilty of misconduct, arguing that the charge could not be sustained from the evidence given.

"It wasn't sustainable as the pupils shared the same kitchen with teachers and so going to the teachers' cottage was inevitable," Justice Kabasa ruled.

"The washing of dishes in itself can't be regarded as improper association with minors. It's also a norm for pupils to go to teachers' cottages."

Justice Kabasa said the disciplinary authority erred in their ruling adding that the evidence which was largely extracted from the schoolgirl and two other witnesses was inconsistent and contradictory.

As a result Justice Kabasa felt that the teacher had been wrongly convicted of misconduct by the disciplinary authority.

"In the result, the appeal be and is hereby allowed with costs. The respondent be and hereby ordered to reinstate the appellant (Ngwenya) without loss of salary or benefits from the date of the unlawful dismissal," she ruled.

In his heads of argument, Ngwenya said there was no conclusive evidence linking him to the alleged crime. He said the disciplinary hearing had no basis in its findings, arguing evidence from the witnesses.

Source - The Worker