THE Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) has petitioned the High Court challenging the Labour Court’s recent decision ordering the reinstatement of its suspended director of news and current affairs, Tazzen Mandizvidza.
BY CHARLES LAITON
ZBC is seeking an order to reverse the judgment issued by the Labour Court in December last year.
Hardly two weeks after the Labour Court ordered Mandizvidza’s reinstatement, the national broadcaster again suspended him arguing that he was still facing disciplinary action over alleged misappropriation of over a million dollars.
On Monday this week, ZBC filed a court application arguing that when the Labour Court made a determination to have Mandizvidza reinstated and reimbursed his past proven costs contemplated in clause (9)1 of the national broadcaster’s code of conduct, ZBC had not been given a chance to present its position.
“This is an application for rescission of judgment obtained by the respondent (Mandizvidza) in casu in the absence of the applicant (ZBC),” the national broadscater’s chief executive officer Patrick Mavhura said in his founding affidavit.
Mavhura said on December 19 2018, ZBC was served with a court order that had been obtained by Mandizvidza through an urgent chamber application.
“The applicant and its legal practitioners were not served with the urgent chamber application and notice of set down that resulted in the order against it being granted in its absence,” he said.
“On discovering that an order against it had been granted, the applicant requested for the file at the Labour Court. On perusing the file, the applicant confirmed that service and notice of set down were indeed not served on them or their legal practitioners.”
Mavhura further said the Labour Court file did not also have any directives that were issued to dispense with the service provided for in the rules of the Labour Court of 2017, adding the order was granted void of conforming to the rules of the court.
“If the order that was granted was to stand, the applicant would suffer irreparable prejudice as it interferes with the disciplinary hearing that commenced on December 11, 2018.
The applicant would also suffer irreparable prejudice in that they are being ordered to make payments that might be impossible to recover if consideration is taken that the respondent is facing serious allegations that run into over a million dollars,” he said.
The matter is yet to be set down for hearing.