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'Labour office agreed with what we did', Coco Ocean Human Resources Manager tells court

Oct 3, 2011, 1:18 PM | Article By: Yusuf Ceesay

Sheikh Tijan Gaye, Human Resources Manager of Coco Ocean, has told the Industrial Tribunal in Kanifing that the Labour Department office has agreed with what they did, after their tripartite meeting with the plaintiff, Lamin Fadera.

Fadera sued the company claiming the recovery of D200,000 for wrongful termination, damages for breach of contract, interest in the sum of 25% and cost.

In his evidence, Mr Gaye, who said he knew the plaintiff, told the tribunal that he is the Human Resources and Administration Manager of the Coco Ocean Hotel.

He said the plaintiff claimed to be wrongfully terminated by the Coco Ocean Hotel and on 26 April 2010 the plaintiff was called by the manager about an incident he knew about but was not in his (Mr Gaye’s) presence.

He adduced that he was given a report of an incident by the general manager.

The report, he explained, was about an interrogation of three of their housekeepers, including the plaintiff, for some missing money from one of their guests’ rooms.

According to him, one Dawda Badjie responded that he knew nothing about it whilst the plaintiff initially swore to the Holy Quran that he knew nothing about it.

The manager told the plaintiff that he should not swear just for 100 pounds and that a true Muslim doesn’t do that, the witness stated.

Mr Gaye indicated that the plaintiff got agitated and was screaming because the manager asked him about the missing money.

Continuing his testimony, he said the plaintiff was asked to go home and that the following day the matter was sent to the general manager, who, he added, after investigation, he decided to terminate the plaintiff’s services.

He indicated again that the following day, they were called to a tripartite meeting at the Labour Office, attended by the plaintiff.

“After the meeting, the Labour Office agreed with what we did; after which they advised the plaintiff to come for his money, his monthly salary, monthly notice, pending leaves and holidays, which he received,” he noted.

“That was the last time we heard from the plaintiff,” he also said, adding that the plaintiff was angry at the initial part of the meeting.

The plaintiff was not happy with the way the meeting was conducted, but the matter was settled amicably, the human resources manager told the tribunal.

According to him, the general manager was no more working with the hotel.

He also said he had file of employees including other staff, indicating that the plaintiff was suspended in 2007 but he could not remember the date.

Asked by the defendant’s counsel to read a part from Exhibit B, the human resources and admin manager told the tribunal that the plaintiff was terminated and given benefits for his termination.

He also told the court that it was only the plaintiff that was sent home, “because of his behaviour”.

Hearing continues on 17 October 2011.