THE High Court’s Labour Division has endorsed the dismissal from employment services, former Relation Manager with FNB Tanzania Limited, Mr Lugaumuza Lutakoibwa, for gross negligence.
Judge Zainab Mruke ruled against Mr Lutakoibwa, the applicant, after dismissing his application for revision he had lodged to oppose the findings of the Commission for Mediation and Arbitration (CMA) over labour dispute involving such financial institution, the respondent.
“The court finds that there was no compelling reason to overturn the commission’s decision on the legality of the applicant’s dismissal,” she ruled.
In relation to the petitioner’s claim to be paid compensation for 36 months’ salary for unfair dismissal amounting to 139,000,000/-, terminal benefits and general damages of 5,842,500/-, the judge noted that such reliefs could not be granted by CMA because the applicant was fairly dismissed.
“This court does not consider the grounds for disagreement with the commission’s decision considering that it also found that the dismissal of the applicant was lawful.
For that reason, this application is dismissed for lack of merits. It is so ordered,” she declared. The judge went through the proceedings of the matter and the court found that there was no dispute that there was a borrower, who wanted to take a loan of 500m/- and that the latter had two different signatures and the signatures were discovered by the applicant himself.
“There was an argument whether the applicant reported the matter to the respondent on such discrepancy. In his statement, the applicant stated that he had informed his supervisor about the discrepancy.
But such position differs with his statement he gave earlier,” she said. According to her, it is clear that the applicant as an officer with the respondent was responsible for taking care and performing his duties carefully.
The judge pointed out that the act by the applicant of observing the two signatures; he was supposed to use the applicable procedure of requiring the borrower to take an oath to prove that both signatures were his to avoid possible consequences, thus occasioning loss to the respondent of the loan in question.
But the applicant, she noted, did not fulfill his duty and decided to direct the borrower to sign the title deed in the loan guarantee, knowing that it was not office procedure.
She said that the argument that the loan was processed through different departments does not remove the fact that the applicant did not fulfill his duty of being careful and honest even if such role was not specified in his job description, considering he was the initiator of loan procedures.
It is on record that on January 2, 2013, the applicant was hired by the respondent in the position of Relationship Manager.
He remained in the post until February 14, 2018 when he was fired for gross negligence and breach of trust, which could have resulted in the loss of 500m/-.
The applicant was not satisfied with the dismissal, so he referred his dispute to CMA, where the decision was in the respondent’s favour.
After being dissatisfied with the award presented by the Commission, the applicant decided to take the matter to the High Court’s Labour Division for further adjudication.