Court rules against PSS
HIGH Court judge, Justice Tšeliso Monaphathi, on Tuesday ruled that the case in which principal secretaries (PSS) are challenging the termination of their contracts is not an urgent issue and should therefore be dealt with in terms of the normal court processes.
This followed a court application by 10 outgoing PSS, to have their case treated as urgent matter after they were sent on a 40 day leave on 24 July, 2017 pending termination of the contracts they signed with the former seven parties’ coalition government that was headed by Democratic Congress leader, Pakalitha Mosisili.
All Basotho Convention party leader, Thomas Thabane, was sworn as Prime Minister in June in the wake of snap elections in the same month after his party combined its 48 seats with those of the Alliance of Democrats (nine seats), Basotho Congress Party (five) and the Reformed Congress of Lesotho (one) to form a new government. The PSS are the administrative heads and chief accounting officers of government departments.
They are Lebohang Moreke, Lisebo ‘Mapulumo Mosisili, ‘ Makhojane Monyane, Majakathata Mokoena Thakhisi, ‘Mampho Kotelo-‘molaoa, Borenahabokhethe Sekonyela, Makalo Theko, Motseki Mofammere, ‘ Mapitso Panyane and ‘Mapaseka Kolotsane.
They filed an urgent application last Tuesday challenging their forced leaves pending termination of their contracts.
They are also complaining about the amendment on their contracts in May this year by the former government to the effect that their contracts would end automatically immediately when the-then government relinquished power. However, Justice Monaphathi ruled that their case was not urgent because they were aware of the consequences as early as when they signed the amended contracts.
“What the applicants are complaining about now is what they have known all along when the amendments were made,” Justice Monaphathi said in his ruling.
“They were aware that this would happen because theirs were political appointments. There is no urgency in this matter and the applicants must pay costs.
“There is no urgency because they are even now on leave and their leave expires more than 21 days from now,” the judge ruled on Tuesday.
The judge also said the merits of the case would be determined during the hearing of the case after all relevant court papers had been filed by both parties to the dispute.
“The agreement, contract and the show cause are challenged in this application.
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