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EX-Jerma Beach Hotel Bay manageress gives evidence

Jan 18, 2012, 2:15 PM | Article By: Yusuf Ceesay

Tisbey Faye, ex-bay manageress, who sued her former employer, Jerma Beach Hotel, to the Industrial Tribunal at Kanifing, recently testified against the defendant.

It would be recalled that the plaintiff was among three employees of Jerma Beach Hotel that dragged the defendant to court claiming D194,335 for unlawful termination and 20 per cent salary reduction.

Testifying before the court, the plaintiff recalled that on 30 November 2007 their management staff was called and were told that their salaries were going to be deducted by 20 per cent.

She adduced that the management appealed to them that it was due to financial problems and the deduction would not last long.

She noted that when she enquired about the duration, she was told that it was not going to last for two months.

According to her, they kept complaining about the issue and went to the General Manager, Mr Ali, and Mr Naser, the CEO of the hotel, but nothing was done.

“We later referred the matter to Ebrima Garba Cham, Secretary General of the Gambia Workers’ Union, but nothing has been done,” said the plaintiff.

In April 2009, she continued, they were called by the general manager and the CEO to a meeting, adding that during the meeting the two informed them they were again going to deduct salaries by 50% due to the low season.

However, the witness noted in her evidence that there was no low season at the hotel since they started operating in 2006, due to series of conferences they hosted and others.

“The next day, I was called by one of the management staff to write a letter not to accept the 50% deduction,” the witness asserted.

According to her, she went home and wrote her resignation letter.

 “All what I am claiming was the 20% deduction from my salary which they promised to pay,” she indicated.

Under cross-examination, she noted that her first employment contract was only for one year, which elapsed on 30 November 2007 and her contract was renewed.

She told the tribunal that from May 2008 to December 2008, she received half payment of her salary.

She denied that she did not complain about any matter to the defendant.

She adduced that she handed her retirement letter to one of the National Assembly Members, claiming 20% deduction of her salary after her resignation.

When the defendant’s counsel showed the witness a letter, claiming that it was prepared by the witness to deceive the tribunal, the plaintiff denied the claim, noting that it was prepared before 20 November 2009.

“You stated that you received the salary of your second employment contract, do you have any evidence?” Defendant’s counsel asked and the witness responded in the negative.

She denied that none of her letters for the Trade Union or the National Assembly Members indicated deduction of salary except exhibit P2A.

She also denied that she was answerable to Baba Darbo, who was the Human Resource Manager of the hotel at that time.

When it was put to her that her letter of resignation was referred to the general manager and she replied accepting her resignation, the plaintiff denied this assertion.

When further quizzed that the defendant did not owe her any amount of money until her retirement, she responded in the negative, further emphasizing to the tribunal that she was only claiming the 20% deducted from her salary.

Hearing continues on 25 January 2012.