Sheryl Cwele fighting to get job back

2012-04-13 10:42
Durban - Sheryl Cwele is fighting to get her job back.

Cwele, who was fired as director of health services for Hibiscus Coast Municipality (HCM) after being convicted of drug trafficking, is taking her former employer to the South African Local Government Bargaining Council (SALGBC) for unfair dismissal.

Speaking to The Witness on Thursday, Cwele said, “I am indeed appealing the case for a number of reasons which will be revealed during the appeals process.”

The date for the hearing is set for May 8. Efforts to verify the date with SALGBC were unsuccessful.

“At this stage I am unable to provide any further details,” she added.

Fired


Cwele was fired at the end of September last year after an appeals committee found her guilty of misconduct following her drug conviction.

The matter was chaired by Brian Denny of Norton Rose South Africa after Cwele had appealed against her dismissal arising from a disciplinary hearing.

In May last year Cwele was found guilty in the KwaZulu-Natal High Court for drug trafficking. She and co-accused Nigerian Frank Nabolisa were sentenced to 12 years imprisonment.

The pair were linked to South African drug mule, Tessa Beetge, who was arrested and imprisoned in Sao Paula, Brazil, for drug trafficking in 2008.

Beetge is still serving an eight-year jail term in Sao Paula.

Cwele is out on R100 000 bail while she appeals her conviction in the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein.

Cwele’s attorney who is representing her in her criminal case, Edward Ngubane, said that a date is still to be set for the Supreme Court of Appeal.

On Thursday, Ngubane had no knowledge of Cwele’s appeal.

“Maybe she is using alternate representation in that matter,” he added.

Misconduct


HCM spokesperson Simon Soboyisa said the municipality will definitely defend its decision on the matter as it believes the matter was “handled in a proper manner and the decision was the right one”.

At the time of her dismissal HCM municipal manager S'bu Mkhize said that the dismissal was straightforward and no settlement will be paid to Cwele.

“This was not a negotiation process. It was a matter of misconduct, which sanctioned a dismissal with no payout or settlement amount,” Mkhize said.

On her dismissal Cwele was paid R33 892.14 in October 2011 for her salary and any leave days due to her.

“According to the municipality there is nothing that is owed to Mrs Cwele as all her dues were paid that relate to her terms and conditions under which she was employed and in relation to the circumstances in which the contract came to an end,” Soboyisa added.

According to HCM the proceedings are set for May 8, However, Cwele claims they have been postponed to May 9.
 
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