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General News of Monday, 18 February 2008

Source: GNA

TUC to discuss court ruling on sacking of employees

Accra, Feb. 18, GNA - The Ghana Trades Union Congress (GTUC) is asking all local union leaders at work places in Accra and Tema to attend a meeting on Tuesday at the GTUC to discuss a ruling of an Accra Fast Track High Court on sacking of employees. The meeting scheduled for 0900 hours will discuss the ruling of the court that, "employers can sack without reason" and its implications to security of employment, industrial harmony and labour relations in Ghana.

The Court, presided over by Mrs. Irismay Brown ruled that the Labour Act, 2004 does not compel employers to provide reasons when they terminate the employment of employees. It said since a contract of employment was not like that of servitude, the former could be "severed at any time and for any reason or none" subject only to the services of the appropriate notice. Judgement was in a case brought before the court by the National Labour Commission (NLC) seeking an order to compel Ghana Telecom to make payments to a former employee in accordance with the Commission's orders.

The judge said the law made a distinction between dismissal, which connoted misconduct, and termination, which did not necessarily impute such connotation.

The court said whereas dismissal without justification amounted to wrongful termination of contract and rendered an employer liable for damages, in the case of termination of contract brought before the courts, no reason had to be given. It said an employer when sued had to justify a dismissal to avoid liability.

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