Tshepo Mahanuke, the fired chief executive officer of the Johannesburg Roads Agency, has approached the Labour Court in a bid to challenge his dismissal.
Mahanuke was fired earlier this month by the JRA Board after he failed to explain to them the fraudulent qualifications detected on his CV, which he allegedly used to land the lucrative R3.5 million per annum job.
Reports last year said Mahanuke had bought an honorary doctorate from the Trinity International University of Ambassadors and that his Master’s degree in competitive intelligence from ACI College was not actually offered at Harvard.
He was suspended in November last year when allegations surfaced.
In his urgent court papers filed on Monday, he also wants the JRA board to be interdicted from filling the position he held “pending the correct process of labour being followed”.
Mahanuke claimed in court papers that within the first few months of his lucrative job, he fell out with members of the previous JRA board, who he said, wanted to interfere with his work.
He said he resisted as he believed they had no business in operational matters. Dealing with matters related to operations.
NEWS: Former Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) CEO, Tshepo Mahanuke is challenging his recent dismissal in the Labour Court. In urgent court papers filed on Monday, Mahanuke claims that in the first few months into his job, members of the previous board interfered in his work and— Sihle Mavuso (@ZANewsFlash) June 30, 2023
Regarding his alleged "fake" qualifications, Mahanuke said his CV was doctored by people within JRA and then leaked to the media to punish him for resisting interference.
Mahanuke claimed that the process followed to fire him was not fair, as his hearing had abruptly changed from an independently chaired disciplinary hearing, only for the JRA to later appoint JRA board chairperson Charles Cilliers, as the chairperson of the disciplinary hearing.
He alleged that Cilliers took over as chair and thereafter his conduct was that of a person who was too emotional when asked to be fair. He said he could not defend himself in such a process.
“I wish to state that on or around 23 May 2023 I received a letter by email which was signed by the chairperson of the JRA Board.
“The letter is titled: Cancellation of CEO disciplinary hearing the way forward,” he argued before the court.
Mahanuke said the JRA claimed it was terminating the independently chaired disciplinary as it cost a lot of money. Instead, it opted for Cilliers to chair the internal hearing.
He said he objected to this as the case law cited was not applicable to his disciplinary hearing.
Despite his objections, he submitted his written submission as requested by Cilliers before taking a final decision on his fate.
“The JRA board responded through a letter dated 9 June 2023 in which it made its decision to terminate my employment," he said.
Cilliers did not respond when approached for comment by IOL.