Phiri v Mpukotu Construction (IRC 82 of 2006 ) (82 of 2006) [2006] MWIRC 152 (15 December 2006);

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IN THE INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS COURT OF MALAWI


MZUZU REGISTRY


MATTER NO. IRC 82 OF 2006


BETWEEN

PHIRI……………….………..….………………………………………… APPLICANT

AND


MPUKUTO CONSTRUCTION..……….………….…………………..RESPONDENT


CORAM: R. Zibelu Banda (Ms); Chairperson

Applicant; present

Respondent; Managing Director

Namponya; Official Interpreter


RULING

Employment-Contract of employment-Terms and Conditions-Parties to carry out contractual obligations.


The Law

This was a specific contract to perform a specific task covered by section 25 of the Employment Act. It is trite law that parties to a contract are bound by the express or implied terms of the contract unless it can be shown otherwise, see Salimu V Bestobell (Mw) Ltd [Matter Number IRC 25/2005 (unreported)] and Gomiwa and another V Malawi revenue Authority [Matter Number IRC 329/2005 (unreported)].


In this case the applicant agreed with the respondent to do certain works on sites. The applicant would get paid a salary of MK 10 000-00 per month, site allowance of MK 5 000-00 and bonus of MK 50 000-00 for any completed work. This he proved through an offer of employment exhibited and marked as AP1. The respondent tried to dispute that there was any such contract. However he failed to produce any contrary contract although he did not dispute that he employed the applicant. The court accepted AP 1 as the offer of employment containing express terms of the contract as agreed and signed for between the applicant and the respondent. The work was done but no payment was made for several months.


The applicant claimed MK 290 000-00 but the respondent was able to show that he paid the applicant MK 60 000-00 in wages. The court finds that the applicant performed his part of the contract but the respondent did not honour the whole agreement. The court orders that the respondent should pay the applicant MK 260 000-00 being lump sum for withheld wages, site allowances and bonuses for three projects.


The applicant bloated his claim in court by adding other amounts which were not pleaded in the Statement of Claim. The applicant is advised to institute a separate claim for those reliefs.


ORDER

The court orders the respondent to pay the applicant MK 260 000-00. This order is with effect within seven days of this date.


Any party aggrieved by this decision is at liberty to appeal to the High Court within 30 days of this date. Appeal lies only on matters of law or jurisdiction; section 65 (2) Labour Relations Act 1996.


Pronounced this 15th day of December 2006 at MZUZU.



Rachel Zibelu Banda

CHAIRPERSON.