Employees may, in future, be able to produce sick notes from sangomas, following a Labour Appeal Court ruling, it was reported on Sunday.

The court upheld a Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration finding that a Pretoria country estate's dismissal of chef Johanna Mmoledi was “substantively unfair”, the Sunday Times reported.

It had refused to grant her a month's unpaid leave in 2007 to attend a sangoma's course to appease her ancestors, but she went anyway leaving behind two letters, one of which was from a traditional healer.

Welcoming the ruling, the Black Business Council said companies should not victimise workers who visited traditional healers.

“Companies cannot only accept certificates from medical doctors when we live in a diversified society,” said its president Ndaba Ntsele. - Sapa