Blood Service whistle-blower victimisation complaint falls

Organisation: Position: Deadline Date: Location:

The company secretary of the SA National Blood Service headquarters in Roodepoort, has lost a Labour Court (Johannesburg) bid for an interim interdict to stop the institution from disciplining him in terms of the Protected Disclosures Act.

According to a TimesLIVE report, Judge Edwin Tlhotlhalemaje found that Mduduzi Luthuli’s “personal animosity” for blood service CEO Jonathan Louw “cannot morph into a matter falling within the confines of the (whistle-blower legislation)”.

Tlhotlhalemaje said a deteriorating relationship between Luthuli and Louw, who took over as CEO in January 2018, exploded into the boardroom at a blood service executive committee meeting on 22 July. Three days later, Luthuli e-mailed all executive committee and board members complaining about Louw’s management style. On 31 July, Luthuli filed a grievance against Louw, demanding a hearing in which the board should consider instituting disciplinary action against the CEO.

A month later, Tlhotlhalemaje wrote in his judgment, board member William Gumede told Luthuli the board had decided he must resign or face a disciplinary inquiry, and on 11 September he was placed on precautionary suspension. The blood service told Tlhotlhalemaje that Luthuli’s application was a stratagem to avoid a disciplinary hearing.

TimesLIVE report

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