Mkoba lecturers win case against principal

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Fourty-nine lecturers from Mkoba Teachers’ College, who took the college principal and the Higher and Tertiary Education Ministry to the Labour Court over the cessation of their salaries, have won their case.

Labour Court judge Justice Maxwell Takuva, who presided over the case on Monday, ruled in favour of the lecturers.

The court heard the college principal, Florence Dube, and the ministry owed the lecturers a retention allowance amounting to $1 082 each.

The lecturers complained that Dube short-changed them after the ministry agreed 30% of tuition fees be used to pay retention allowances to both lecturing and non-lecturing staff.

They accused Dube of failing to pay them their allowances for seven months, resulting in them embarking on a six-day sit–in from July 4 this year.

As a result, the principal wrote to the Salary Service Bureau on July 13 directing the SSB director to cease payment of salaries of the 49 lecturers who embarked on the sit-in.

This resulted in the lecturers failing to get their salaries.

The lecturers challenged the action.
The lecturers’ lawyer Walter Chikanda said:

“The grounds are that the action was arbitrary and it was not in conformity with the audi alterum parten rule which provides that the other party should be heard before any action or conduct that affects their rights should be taken.”

A temporary order was granted on July 22, 2011 wherein the Public Service Commission and the director of the SSB were ordered not to stop the salaries.