Limpopo must rehire dentists who are on study contracts

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DentistsThe Public Servants Association has welcomed the judgment by the Limpopo High Court which has ordered the Limpopo Health Department to re-employ seven dentists. The Citizen reports that the judgment comes after their contracts were terminated by the department before the completion of their community service terms.

PSA provincial manager for Limpopo John Teffo said: “The judgment should be taken seriously by the department as other health professionals are not yet absorbed based on the signed contract. On a yearly basis, the department enters into a contract with health professionals who embark on their studies. In the contract, the department binds health professionals to serve the department for the period they were released for studies. The PSA warned the department that it has an obligation to absorb those health professionals who completed their studies as per the signed contract.”

The report says according to the PSA, despite the fact that it called on the department to absorb affected health professionals, the department maintained its stance. Teffo said: “The non-absorbing of those health Professionals is because of a lack of proper planning. The PSA embarked on a process to consolidate the list of all affected employees to ensure that justice is served for these employees who through no wrong-doing found themselves at the mercy of an employer who has demonstrated that it doesn’t care about its employees.

“The PSA is vindicated by this judgment as it has been the union’s position that the department was wrong to terminate the contracts of these employees and that it was obliged to allow them to complete their five years in line with their contracts. Alternatively, the department should pay them off if it intends to terminate the contracts prematurely. The PSA will not allow the department not to honour its obligation towards these employees as per the signed contract.”

The Citizen report

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