Two members of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the National Amalgamated Local and Central Government and Parastatal Workers Union (NALCG&PWU), have lost their bid to interdict the Union from proceeding with their disciplinary hearing.
The two, Molemosi Teemane and Nicholas Sekwenyane had approached the High Court urgently seeking an interdiction against their disciplinary hearing, which was scheduled for last Friday.
Although it is not yet clear why the two have been cited for a disciplinary hearing, sources say the members are victims of the ongoing power struggle at the Union, otherwise known commonly as Manual Workers’ Union.
Lobatse High Court Judge, Jennifer Dube dismissed their application saying it was not urgent. She however, reserved her full reasons for February 1, 2019.
In their application, the two had argued that they would suffer irreparable harm if the disciplinary hearing process against them continued because it was unlawfully constituted.
They said that there was a resolution of the NEC citing them for a disciplinary hearing.
“It shouldn’t be allowed to continue because it is unlawfully convened. There was no resolution of the NEC meeting of December 21, 2018 citing the two for disciplinary hearing. If the recommendations of the disciplinary hearing is negative, the NEC will use it to expel us,” the argued.
However, attorney Mboki Chilisa who represented Manual Workers Union argued that the applicants abused the court process by rushing to court for an interdict.
He said that was not necessary for the two to seek an interdict of the disciplinary hearing process because they would not suffer any prejudice.
They also argued that they feared that the chairperson of the disciplinary hearing committee could be biased against them.
“These proceedings are an abuse of the court process because there is no irreparable harm that the applicants would suffer if the hearing is convened. The harm they talk about can only materialise if NEC impose sanctions on them. But it can choose not to consider the recommendations of the disciplinary hearing,” Chilisa argued .
He also argued that there was no bias on the person who has been chosen to chair the disciplinary hearing process.
“The harm is speculative. They are pre-empting the outcome of the disciplinary process. If they feel that the person chairing the disciplinary hearing process is biased, they should raise those issues at the hearing,” he said.
He further argued that the applicants had clear substantial redress available in due course because, whatever outcome made from the disciplinary hearing, the decisions is not going to impact immediately as NEC is the only authority to exercise disciplinary sanctions on members.