Saturday, October 24, 2020

VP Masisi, PSP accused of union bashing

Botswana Federation of Public Sector Union (BOFEPUSU) on Friday filed an urgent application seeking an interim interdict staying a decision of the Director of Public Service Management (DPSM) to transfer BOFEPUSU President Johannes Tshukudu and his Treasurer General Moses Monnatsie from their current work station to the Ministry of Transport and Communications and Ministry of Youth Sports and Culture respectively.

Tshukudu is currently a lecturer at Tlokweng College of Education while his treasurer is a teacher.

In his founding affidavit Tshukudu said he received reliable information that the decision to transfer him and his colleague is part of a stratagem to weaken BOFEPUSU and to prevent persons who want Botswana Teachers Union (BTU) to continue being affiliated to BOFEPUSU from contesting leadership positions at the upcoming BTU Elective Congress.

“It is intended to pave way for persons within BTU who want BTU to disaffiliate from BOFEPUSU. I cannot contest for the position of President which I intended to unless I am employed in a teaching institution. This is because only full members are entitled to contest for positions in the National Executive Committee,” said Tshukudu in his founding affidavit.

Tshukudu challenged DPSM to provide some rational justification for the transfers, he said he will in due course produce credible evidence to demonstrate that the DPSM has used its powers under the Public Service Act to try and ensure that the anti-BOFEPUSU faction prevails at the upcoming BTU Elective Congress.

The transfer letter states that the transfer is with immediate effect. This means should DPSM not be interdicted from implementing the transfers Tshukudu and his Treasurer General will be forced to take up the transfers they deem unlawful.

The positions they occupies will then be filled up, His candidature for the Presidency of the Botswana Teachers’ Union will be invalid. BTU will be left without any political leadership if the DPSM’s decision is implemented.

Justice Harold Ruhukya of the Industrial court is expected to deliver a ruling on the matter next week.

Meanwhile BOFEPUSU wrote a letter to Botswana Democratic Party Secretary General Botsalo Ntuane warning against the interference of the Party Chairman Mokgweetsi Masisi on the internal affairs of trade unions.

In the letter BOFEPUSU said they understand that in these deeds scheming against destruction of trade unions the Vice President is alleged to be involved and so is Permanent Secretary to the President. 

“We would like the party to come out and make clarification on the alleged involvement of the Party Chairman and Vice President and as well as the Permanent Secretary to the President in these actions against Labour movement and Trade Union. We are saying these as we view these developments as pointing to an anti Trade Unions stance by the party and Government,” said BOFEPUSU in their letter.

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