Durban - The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) has won its appeal in the Constitutional Court against the unfair dismissal of 65 workers at Dunlop in August 2012 in KwaZulu-Natal, the union said on Saturday.
Judgment was handed down on Friday, Numsa national spokesperson Phakamile Hlubi-Majola said in a statement.
On August 22, 2012, 200 workers at Dunlop went on a legally protected strike. On the day the strike started, violence erupted and it continued throughout the month-long strike. After the strike ended, the employer took workers through a disciplinary process and dismissed them on the basis of alleged misconduct, violence, and intimidation, he said.
"As Numsa, we challenged the fairness of the dismissal on the basis that 65 workers who had not been individually identified as part of the strike were dismissed because of 'derivative misconduct'. This is defined as a situation where an employee who has knowledge of wrongdoing towards his or her employer subsequently fails to disclose such knowledge to their employer. It is also known as ‘snitching’."
Numsa took the matter up through arbitration and the workers were reinstated. But Dunlop was unhappy with the outcome and took the matter on review at the Labour Court. The decision was overturned and workers were dismissed.