MBABANE: Nanikie Mnisi, the Under Secretary in the Ministry of Public Works allegedly forced a government employee to resign for attending Incwala ceremony.
Documents in our possession disclose that on 16 March 2021, the Under Secretary wrote a letter to Melusi Matsabatsa accusing him of being absent from duty after he attended the Incwala ceremony.
“Absenteeism from work for more than a total of three(3) working days without either the permission of the employer or a certificate signed by a medical practitioner or other unavoidable circumstances is a serious violation of the employment contract and constitutes misconduct”,reads the letter with reference WT/P.F.NO signed by the Under Secretary.
But it transpired that Melusi Matsabatsa had responded to a formal royal command communicated to his employer through a letter written by the Director of Culture Coordinator and Traditional Affairs Prince Bukhosi Dlamini on or around 05 November 2020 during the commencement of the recently held Incwala ceremony.
“Your authority is sought to release your officer Melusi Mpalampala D Matsabatsa for a royal duty at Cattle Byre Ludzidzini, he should report to Ludzidzini on 5 November 2020 until the end of Incwala ceremony“read the letter in part by Prince Bukhosi addressed to Principal Secretary Khangezile Mabuza.
Reached for comments, Melusi Matsabatsa confirmed that he was forced to resign by the Under Secretary for attending royal duties adding that he would soon take legal action as this amounts to constructive dismissal.
“It’s true, I was forced to resign for responding to a command to attend the Incwala ceremony and conduct royal duties, I will definitely take legal action”, he said.
Efforts to reach Khangeziwe Mabuza, the Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Public Works proved unsuccessful at the time of compiling this report.
When reached for comments Nanikie Mnisi, the Under Secretary in the Ministry of Public Works denied that she forced the Government employee to resign adding that as the employer, they were still looking for him to go back to work.
“It’s not true that I forced him to resign, actually we are still looking for him to go back to work.We even wrote a letter requesting him to show cause why disciplinary action should not be taken against him because he disappeared saying he was attending Incwala” ,said the Under Secretary.
Speaking to this Swaziland News publication on the subject matter, Lusendvo Fakudze, the Ludzidzini Royal Palace Governor advised Matsabatsa to prepare all the documents that requested him for royal duties and report to the Ludzidzini Council as a matter of urgency.
“He must just prepare the documentation that requested him for the royal duties and report to the Ludzidzini Council so that the matter could be addressed as a matter of urgency. If he misplaced some of the letters, he can ask for a duplicate because it’s available”, said the Governor.
Nanikie Mnisi, the Under Secretary in the Ministry of Public Works