News24

TUT vice-chancellor saga rages on

2012-06-05 22:23

Pretoria - The Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) has asked the Labour Court to review a decision to re-employ controversial former vice-chancellor Professor Johnny Molefe.

TUT administrator Professor Themba Mosia said the university would contest the decision, which was made by the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA).

Molefe was the deputy vice-chancellor responsible for TUT institutional planning and operations until he was appointed to act as vice-chancellor.

When it came to light that he had allegedly used a revoked evaluation certificate to apply for the university's top job, Mosia terminated his contract.

In March, the CCMA ruled that Molefe's dismissal was procedurally and substantively unfair. It ruled that he be reinstated, but to his original post and not as acting vice-chancellor with reported earnings of R2.4 million a year.

The CCMA said it could not interfere with Mosia's decision to remove Molefe as vice-chancellor as he had acted within his authority.

However, Mosia said Molefe's contract for other positions expired on January 31 2011.

"He was, however, on a month-to-month contract with the university until he was appointed vice-chancellor from 1 August in 2011," he said.

"It is inconceivable why the arbitrator [at the CCMA] acted outside what was before him to grant [Molefe] re-employment to the old position that had in any event expired," said Mosia.

"This matter will be taken on review to the Labour Court soon because the arbitrator acted in an ultra vires manner," he said.

The evaluation certificate used by Molefe in his application was for a degree initially recognised by the SA Qualifications Authority (Saqa).

It revoked this certificate on realising that the degree was not from St George's University - an internationally recognised institution based in the Caribbean island nation of Grenada.

Molefe allegedly used the certificate even though Saqa had asked for it to be returned.

Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande placed TUT under administration in August after Molefe was appointed vice-chancellor.