- MINISTRY OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (2) M. RANGA, N.O.
SUPREME COURT OF ZIMBABWE
ZIYAMBI JA, GARWE JA & HLATSHWAYO JA
HARARE, FEBRUARY 4, & FEBRUARY 25, 2014
T. Mpofu, for the appellant
C. Garisenheta, for the respondent
GARWE JA: This is an appeal against the decision of the Labour Court setting aside disciplinary proceedings conducted by a committee constituted by the respondents and directing that the matter be heard de novo before a different committee within thirty (30) days or such extended period as may, on good cause shown, be granted, failing which the appellant was to be reinstated without loss of salary and benefits.
The facts of this case are as follows. The appellant was employed by the respondent Ministry as a Public Prosecutor, stationed at Chinhoyi. Following a police trap, the appellant was found with a marked US$200 note which had allegedly been handed to him by certain accused persons so that he could withdraw a criminal charge levelled against them. Following this development, the appellant was suspended from duty from 20 July, 2010 in terms of the Public Service Regulations, Statutory Instrument 1/2000 (“the Regulations”). The suspension was for a period of three (3) months, that is, until 20 October 2010. By 20 October 2010 the allegation of misconduct levelled against the appellant had not been heard or determined. On 30 November 2010, well after the initial period of suspension had expired, the Public Service Commission, purporting to act in terms of s 49(3)(b)(ii) of the Regulations, extended the order of suspension for a further period of three months but back dated the commencement of such extension to 21 October 2010. This decision was communicated to the appellant on 8 December 2010. The disciplinary hearing eventually took place on 13 January 2011 following which the appellant was found guilty of soliciting for a bribe and getting a bribe and dismissed from the Public Service. Dissatisfied with the decision of the disciplinary committee the appellant filed an application for review.