Judge questions Fleximail logic to pay Zimdollars

8
776

CHIEF Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku yesterday expressed concern over the welfare of the 39 former Fleximail firm employees who were unlawfully dismissed eight years ago, but are yet to receive their severance packages.

CHARLES LAITON

Their former employer insists on giving them the long abandoned and worthless Zimbabwe dollar as packages.

Chief Justice Chidyausiku said although he understood that the company was facing several challenges according to its lawyer Advocate Fadzayi Mahere, the firm had an obligation to at least pay its former workers for the services they rendered to it. The company has said it wants to pay them a total of ZW$12 500 as retrenchment packages.

The Chief Justice urged Mahere and the employees’ lawyers Caleb Mucheche and Munyaradzi Gwisai to urgently find common ground to resolve the impasse.

“Surely, you cannot say these people, who worked for the company and were unlawfully dismissed, cannot be paid for the time they worked for your client. Do you think it would be reasonable to pay them in Zimbabwe dollars?” Chidyausiku queried while addressing Advocate Mahere.

The Chief Justice’s sentiments were echoed by Supreme Court judge Justice Vernanda Ziyambi.

Following a brief adjournment, Advocate Mahere told the bench, comprised of Deputy Chief Justice Luke Malaba, Justices Paddington Garwe, Bharat Patel and Ziyambi, that his client was still insisting on compensating its former employees in Zimbabwe dollars.

After over four hours of deliberations, the parties agreed with the help of the court and the “friend-of-the-court” Advocate Thabani Mpofu, to draft a consent order for the referral of the matter to the Labour Court, for quantification of damages and the currency to be used thereof.

Fleximail took the matter to the Supreme Court on appeal following an order by High Court judge Justice Andrew Mutema ordering the company to pay its former employees damages in lieu of reinstatement in US dollars.

The employees were charged with misconduct and dismissed following a disciplinary hearing in 2005.

They, however, challenged their dismissal and the Labour Court ruled in their favour ordering their reinstatement or that they be paid damages in lieu of reinstatement.

8 COMMENTS

  1. Interesting indeed.. I hope Fleximail is also paying their lawyer in Zimdollars…what informs this reasoning I wonder and what are the employees supposed to do with the zim dollars? Second where is Fleximail getting the zimdollars from, I mean which bank or customer?
    How much have they spent on legal fees in comparison to the compensation sought by employees? Is the decision to pursue this commercial or personal?

  2. Is e Zim$ still a legal tender? How did they come up w that figure and how are they going to effect that transaction in their books. What do they think e employees are going to do w that Zim$? Would e company officials be happy if their pensions and other contributions they made b4 dollarization would be paid in Zim$ shd they retire today. There is no doubt they want to achieve what they failed in e labour courts thru e back door. I think e concourt shd have ordered e company to do e only sensible thing to do which is to pay in US$

  3. decisions that affect a whole tribe have to be fair and expeditiously implemented. he who believes in “fixing” employees through application of power levers should not be permitted access to riding the wheels of justice when a clear case for negotiation exists.

  4. The matter is not as simple as it sounds.That is why even the supreme court cannot simply order the company to pay in US$.The company’s arguement probably is that the money owed to the employee was earned in zim dollars. The company received zimdollars through the service of the employees and cannot pay them US$ instead.The employees sorry plightis the same as that which faced many people at the time of changeover to multicurrencies.

  5. Let the employees insist that they could afford to buy such and such things then so they must be given their money in whatever currency which will make them afford those commodities. The company must pay with interest since its the culprit which unlawfully dismissed employees. Is the Concourt saying Pensions must be paid in Zim$. Logic must prevail here.

  6. Concourt confussed rats why dnt give an order 4 that company 2 pay n US. Are u not the last refferal court . When Mugabe robbed wyt peoples farms he was asked 2 pay th compensation, but l never heard hm saying that now we want 2 pay it in the scrapped Zim dollars. Just bcoz they are poor pple they cant be protected by the law. I would lyk 2 urge thos workers 2 knock on th Presidents door wth their case Period.

Comments are closed.