Whistleblowers often claim that they were dismissed due to their
whistleblowing activities and are therefore entitled to the special
statutory compensation intended to protect whistleblowers.
Without attempting to exhaust all the intricacies of such a
claim, it must be remembered that even if an employee is convinced
that the irregularities cautioned against occurred and is genuinely
displeased by them, he or she must exercise caution as unrestrained
conduct could lead to lawful dismissal.
In a recent case, an employee in a pizza chain sent his managers
a letter of demand stating that it was being sent before he took
legal action.1 In the letter, the employee warned that
employee entitlements had been breached for many years and that the
breach reflected company policy. Further, the employee demanded
that the company pay him compensation, without substantiating his
demand, adding that he was willing to help other employees in view
of the breach of their entitlements.
The employee was summoned to a hearing and dismissed.
The employee's claim that he had been dismissed due to
whistleblowing was denied. The labour court accepted the
company's position that the employee had been dismissed because
of his allegation that the company had adopted a discriminatory
policy and due to his unbridled, injurious and disrespectful
The court found that the employee had breached the duty of good
faith owed to his employer by raising unsubstantiated demands for
compensation and creating a link between said demands and his
willingness to assist other employees in receiving their
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