DFCU bank and ex Crane bank staff are readying themselves for another showdown in court after the High Court in Kampala gave green light to over 400 ex-Crane Bank staff to roast DFCU over illegal termination.
The staff had received assurance from the regulator, Bank of Uganda that none would lose their jobs after the former second-biggest bank in Uganda showdown, in an exercise probe after probe punched holes into the handling of the matter.
On April 7, 2021, mediation between Crane bank staff and DFCU were closed after the parties failed to agree on a settlement. Now Crane Bank staff want reintatement or payment in damages.
This gave impetus to former Crane Bank workers, represented by lawyers Isaac Ssemakadde and Namahe Sheila to file and serve DFCU Bank’s lawyers Sebalu & Lule Advocates.
Crane bank staff, in the application, want to compel DFCU to produce documentation regarding their employment and dismissal, for inspection.
The petitioners’ lawyers said DFCU violated many provisions in Uganda’s constitution as well as the country’s labour laws.
“They are entitled to reinstatement if they so wish as first priority if not they are entitled to recover compensation and this compensation would be substantial because dfcu violated numerous norms and standards in our constitution” said the lawyer.
Bank of Uganda sale of Crane Bank to DFCU is still shrouded in mystery, with all sides tight-lipped on the details of the transaction.
Investigations have since revealed that the central bank flaunted regulations and bent the laws to accommodate the transfer of Crane Bank, its assets, and staff to DFCU.
With several cases still in the court, one which involves the illegal dismissal of former employees of Crane Bank Limited (CBL) is up for ruling come April 28 this year, at 11am.
What ex Crane bank staff want from DFCU
- That the respondent’s agents and servants be ordered to produce and permit the applicants and their advocates to inspect and make copies of the following documents or classes of documents, namely:
(a) The Purchase of Assets and Assumption of Liabilities Agreement between the Bank of Uganda and the respondent referred to in paras 5.2 and 5.3 of the Witness Statement of Defence (WSD);
(b) The lists of employees referred to in paras 5.4, 5.5(a)-e), 56, 5.7 and 5.8 of the WSD and in the list of documents attached to the WSD, plus their respective contracts of employment with Crane Bank Ltd (CBL) and/or the respondent
Written notices of resignation as referred to in para 5.4(b) of the WSD;
(d) Any and all contracts of the “employees retained by the respondent [that] were revised to ensure pay and benefits parity with the respondent’s employees” as implied in para 5.5 of the WSD;
Any and all documents showing that the respondent did not underpay former CBL staff for doing the same or broadly similar jobs or jobs of equal value compared to pre-existing employees of the respondent” as implied in para 5.5 of the WSD, including the payroll of the respondent in the month before the acquisition of CBL business December 2016 to January 2017), the the payroll of the respondent after the acquisition of CBL business from 25 January 2017 to 23 October 2017 and the corresponding returns and payment slips for PAYE and NSSF contributions:
- g) The list(s) of former CBL employees that were laid off for reasons implied in para 5.6(a) of the WSD
(h) The list(s) of former CBL employees that were laid off for reasons implied in para 5.6(b) of the WSD;
Any and all documents showing the respondent’s “branch optimization process” implied in para 5.6(c) of the WSD:
The list(s) of former CBL employees that were laid off for reasons implied in para 5.6(c) of the WSD;
Any and all termination letters for the employees referred to in para 5.7(a) of the WSD;
The notification made to the Commissioner of Labour referred to in para 5.7(b) of the WSD;
(m) Any and all documents showing that the respondent promptly paid “appropriate termination packages (including relocation allowances)” to the employees referred to in para 5.7(c) of the WSD;
(n) Certificates of service referred to in para 5.70 of the WSD;
(0) List of roles that were allegedly duplicated as indicated in paras 5.6(c) and 5.8(a) of the WSD;
(p) List of expatriates who were not retained as indicated in para 5.8(c) of WSD;
(q) Written notice of the advice referred to in para 5.8(d) of the WSD;
(r) Any and all documents showing that the respondent made an ex gratia payment of UGX 1,000,000/- to all laid off employees as indicated in para 5.8(e) of WSD, and
- s) Any and all documents notifying former CBL employees about the respondent’s grievance redress mechanism referred to in para 5.8(f) of the WSD.
2) The costs of this application be paid by the respondent with a certificate for two counsel.
The ruling is set for April 28, 2021 at 11:00am
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