Davison Kaiyo Herald Reporter
The Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) has been ordered to reinstate its head of News and Current Affairs Tazzen Mandizvidza with immediate effect pending the finalisation of the civil dispute between the two parties.
Mandizvidza had, through his lawyer Mr Lawman Chimuriwo, approached the Labour Court seeking an order compelling the State-owned broadcaster to reinstate him until their dispute is resolved.
Labour Court president Mrs Betty Chidziva ruled that ZBC should reinstate Mandizvidza in terms of clause (9)1 of its Code of Conduct.
“The respondent (ZBC) should reinstate the applicant (Mandizvidza) with immediate effect,” she said.
“The further suspension of the applicant pending the finalisation of this matter is the prerogative of the employer.”
According to Mr Chimuriwo, they approached the Labour Court on an urgent basis since ZBC was in breach of its own Code of Conduct on the issue of employee suspension.
“According to their Code of conduct, ZBC cannot suspend an employee for more than 10 days without charging them and an employee cannot be suspended on the basis of non-labour issue which is the case in this instance,” he said.
Mandizvidza was suspended in October this year without pay for failing to repay more than $1 million he reportedly owed the State-owned broadcaster.
In November 2014, Mandizvidza was suspended pending disciplinary hearing for misconduct.
Allegations against him were that he had committed numerous financial irregularities that resulted in the public broadcaster incurring massive losses.
The infractions were discovered through a forensic audit report.
The audit was done in 2014, resulting in the veteran journalist and several other senior executives being accused of defrauding the broadcaster of more than US$7 million.
They were all suspended, but Mandizvidza returned to work after striking a deal with the public broadcaster under which he reportedly agreed to pay back what he owed.