Former Action Aid Policy Manager Appears At Industrial Tribunal

By Muhammad Bah

Mr. Lamin Nyangado, former Action Aid International The Gambia Policy Manager and Head of Policy and Advocacy Department on Monday 21st July appeared before the Kanifing Industrial Tribunal presided over by Mr Ousman Jabang and gave his evidence-in-chief in the suit against his former employer.

Nyangado is alleging unlawful termination.

Mr. Nyangado led by Lawyer Kebba Sanyang told the court that he had worked with Action Aid International The Gambia in different and crucial positions within the organisation since his first appointment in 1991, but he was served a notice of redundancy in December 2013.

“I was given a notice of redundancy in December 2013,” said the former Action Aid International The Gambia Head of Advocacy and Policy Department.

Mr. Nyangado tendered his notice of redundancy letter as his first exhibit which was not objected to by the defendant and it was eventually identify as Exhibit A.

Continuing his testimony, he informed the tribunal of the different positions he held while working for Action Aid.

According to Mr. Nyangado, he was employed as Environment and Agro-Forestry Officer from 1991 to 1995 and as Journal Manager from 1995 to 1998 during which he managed a Region with responsibility for an integrated programme which includes education, health, agriculture, sponsorship and any other developmental activity under Action Aid International The Gambia. As Head of the Region, he also supervised extension workers.

Testifying further; he told the tribunal that in 1998, the organisation started operating like a human rights organisation using human rights based approaches, adding he was appointed as Advocacy officer responsible for food security and education until 2004.

He added that in 2008; he was appointed as policy Manager heading the Policy and Advocacy Department responsible for governance, human rights and HIV and AIDs advocacy and policy management until recently in 2013 when he was unexpectedly served a notice of redundancy.

His Lawyer asked whether he was given letters in his different appointments while working for Action Aid, he replied in the positive. But he told the tribunal that he had made a request for his file at the organization, but he has not received any response from the organisation.

He informed the tribunal that the letter addressed to him contradicts the Human Resources and organisation policies of Action Aid and to some extent even its values. He pointed out that the HR policy states it is the position that the person is occupying that could become redundant and not the person, which is contrary to the letter he received.

Lastly, his lawyer asked whether he knew the objective leading to the termination of his service. He responded that the redundancy notice he received said by the end of December there will be a new structure, adding that the letter did not mention in plain language that his employment is terminated.

Subsequently the case was adjourned till the 6th of August 203 for further hearing.