SNAT loses case
MBABANAE - The indefinite strike action by members of the Swaziland National Association of Teachers (SNAT) was yesterday again declared unlawful and thereby interdicted by the Industrial Court.
This means government has won the case against the teachers who on Friday were barred from marching in Mbabane leading to a confrontation between them and the police, which saw a police officer being injured after allegedly being hit by a stone suspected to have been thrown by the protesting teachers.
The judgement was delivered at around 3pm by Industrial Court Judge Dumsani Mazibuko who was sitting with two court assessors.
In his judgment, Mazibuko noted that SNAT did not follow the rules and terms of balloting.
The judge said in their attached affidavit the teachers said they wanted to engage in protest action and not a strike.
He said their lawyer Mandla Mkhwanazi told the court it was a typographical error that the teachers wanted to engage in a protest action instead of a strike.
"Mkhwanazi is not the rightful person to say it was a typographical mistake as he was not the author of the affidavit instead it was one Sibongile Mazibuko who is the president of SNAT," the judge said.
Mazibuko said government was entitled to move the application to stop the indefinite strike.
Government approached the Industrial Court on the strength of a court order issued on June 20, 2012 , which it claimed was defied by the teachers when they engaged in an indefinite strike action.
In his argument in court Mkhwanazi had submitted that government was informed about the protest. He gave a brief background of the events leading to the current strike, beginning when the certificate of unresolved dispute was issued by the Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration Commission up to a balloting process where 98 per cent of the teachers voted for the strike.
According to Mkhwanazi the balloting was conducted by the Swaziland Coalition of Civic Concerned Organisations on June 14.
Over 200 teachers sing after judgment is made
MBABANE - The over 200 teachers who crammed the Industrial Court yesterday chanted and sang political songs after the judgment.
They sang and toyi-toyied at the entrance of the Industrial court while the contingent of police officers who were present kept a vigilant eye on them.
Due to the heavy presence of the police all cars entering the court premises were searched. A body search was conducted on people who were entering and no electronic gadgets like cellphones and cameras were allowed inside the courtroom.
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