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PSA senior employees lodge court action to overturn their suspensions

The PSA is one of the country’s largest public service unions with over 240,000 members.

Tahir Maepa. Picture: psa.co.za

JOHANNESBURG - Suspended senior Public Servants Association of South Africa (PSA) employees lodged a court application to have the sanction by the organisation’s board set aside.

Last month, the PSA board resolved to place general manager Ivan Fredericks, his deputy Tahir Maepa and acting general manager in Mthatha, Thami Makuseni, on precautionary suspension pending an internal forensic investigation.

The PSA is one of the country’s largest public service unions with over 240,000 members.

In the court application filed by Maepa and Makuseni to the High Court in Pretoria, an argument is made that the PSA board of directors had no jurisdiction to place them on suspension.

The two, along with Fredericks, are being investigated for allegedly irregularly appointing a law firm by the union to challenge the outcomes of a 2019 elective congress in the Labour Court.

While the PSA has in the past succeeded in not being embroiled in infighting, which has seen the implosion of many unions in the country, it appeared the failed Labour Court bid by three of its structures had thrown the organisation into disarray.

Maepa and Makuseni further argued in the court documents that the suspensions contradicted the PSA disciplinary code, which states that an employee can only be sanctioned after the rules of natural justice are observed, allowing its employees an opportunity to state their case before action is taken against them.

They further want the court to declare that the decision against them was unlawful and invalid.