#Article (Archive)

Laico Atlantic Hotel case commences

Aug 26, 2013, 2:17 PM | Article By: Dawda Faye

Sheriff Jobarteh, who dragged Laico Atlantic Hotel to the Kanifing Industrial Tribunal for wrongful termination, on 19 August 2013, testified before Magistrate Jobarteh, chairman of the Kanifing Industrial Tribunal, who was assisted by panelists Njie and Cole.

Sheriff Jobarteh told the tribunal that he lives at Talinding and was working for the defendant.

He said he was a restaurant supervisor, adding that he was the chairman of the Atlantic Hotel Workers’ Association.

He posited that as a restaurant supervisor, he was entitled to food.

He further adduced that on 29 December 2012, they normally took food by 9 p.m. and 9.30 p.m. when guests had finished their dinner, adding that when he went to take his food for dinner, a sous chef called Ousman Joof told him that he should not take food from the kitchen.

He said that was the third consecutive time he was doing it to him, and he was not the only supervisor.

He said when Ousman Joof stopped him with the plate of food, he asked him why he was doing it to him, adding that Ousman Joof was not only the third sous chef next to the chef, and they quarreled.

He stated that after fifteen minutes, his immediate boss went to him and told him that it was the Financial Director, Mr Faal, who called him to give him (Sheriff) a warning letter, adding that Sulayman Jawo was his immediate boss.

He testified that he refused to sign the warning letter unless Ousman Joof also signed.

Sheriff Jobarteh added that his boss told him that Ousman Joof had also signed, and that the chef had given him a warning letter when in fact the chef was not available.

He said he then signed the warning letter, adding that to his surprise, on 29 December 2012, when he went to work, he went to the Human Resources Manager to find out whether his warning letter and that of Ousman Joof were issued by him.

He further adduced that the Human Resources Manager told him that it was more than a warning letter but a termination letter, adding that his service was terminated.

Garba Cham, who was representing Sheriff Jobarteh, applied to tender the termination letter and the defendant’s counsel, Kebba Sanyang, did not raise any objection. The said letter was admitted by the tribunal.

Garba Cham again applied to tender an employment letter issued to the plaintiff. The defendant’s counsel did not object to the tendering of the letter.

It was admitted by the tribunal along with a promotion letter.

Sheriff Jobarteh further told the tribunal that after receiving the termination letter, he telephoned Garba Cham and when he explained to him what happened, Garba asked him whether he would write a letter addressed to the management in response to the termination letter, which he did.

The said letter was tendered by Garba Cham and the defendant’s counsel raised no objection. It was admitted by the tribunal.

Sheriff informed the tribunal that before the termination of his service, as the chairman of the Atlantic Hotel Workers’ Association, he was subjected to a lot of harassment.

Kebba Sanyang rose and said he was objecting to the statement because the Atlantic Hotel Workers’ Association was not before the tribunal, adding that the claim before the tribunal was not against the association.

He further challenged that in the termination letter served to Sheriff Jobarteh and his reply, no mention was made that he was the chairman of the Atlantic Hotel Workers’ Association.

He said the evidence was not relevant. As a result, the tribunal disregarded the statement.

The case at this juncture was adjourned till 28 August 2013.

In another development, Lena Gomez, who sued the former Manjai Kunda Alkalo, Momodou Lamin Camara, at the Kanifing Magistrates’ Court for killing her pigs and demolishing her house, called her first witness to testify on her behalf.

The witness, John Gomez, told the court on 22 August 2013, that he lives at Kotu and he is a building contractor, adding that he was working in the plaintiff’s compound.

In 1976, 1977 and 1978, he testified, the plaintiff planted some mongo trees and dug a well in her compound.

Under cross-examination, the defendant put it to him that he knew nothing about the case.

The witness maintained what he said.

The case was adjourned till 12 September 2013.