Bukalo village, CEO court battle ongoing

• By Tracy Tafirenyika 

THE case of the Bukalo Village Council versus its suspended chief executive officer (CEO) Martin Limbo is hanging in the balance after the High Court recently dismissed the decision by the council to appeal stating that, the matter should instead be taken back to the Labour Commissioner for arbitration.  

Limbo was employed as the CEO on a fixed-term contract from the period of June 2015 and to May 2020. A resolution was adopted by the village council in February 2020 that the council would not renew the contract of employment of Limbo.

He then approached the Labour Commissioner and filed a dispute in that he had a legitimate expectation that he was to be subjected to a performance appraisal in terms of the contract of employment, claiming for his contract to be renewed.

However, the village council argued that Limbo did not follow the procedures nor provided notice on his contract employment and took the matter to High Court.

“The village council avers that, the applicant omitted to file parties of interest to the matter such as the Minister of Urban and Rural Development, the Labour Commission has no jurisdiction to adjudicate the relief as he is no longer an employee of the council.”

In the matter, Bukalo village council as the appellant was represented by legal practitioner Jabulani Ncube while the Labour Commissioner was listed as the first respondent, Fabiola Katjivena as the second respondent and Martin Limbo as the third respondent.

The High Court however judged that the matter was brought in prematurely therefore should be taken back to the Labour Commissioner.  

“The court declines to entertain the appeal, the case is referred back to the Office of the Labour Commissioner for the arbitration to continue before the second respondent and the matter is removed from the roll,” court documents read.