Labour Court papers reveal that the resigned director of Zeitz MOCAA, Mark Coetzee, attempted to stop disciplinary action being taken against him during his notice period. Coetzee claimed in court that certain Zeitz Trustees ‘were hell-bent on proceeding with the allegations against him.’
The now ex-director stated in court that he had resigned on the 16 May ‘with immediate effect’ because ‘I didn’t want to hurt Zeitz MOCAA’. Coetzee’s lawyer, W.P. Bekker argued, that because of the immediate nature of his resignation Coetzee was not eligible to face a disciplinary process.
However, the Zeitz Trustees maintained that Coetzee had not done so and that he was serving out a 4 week notice period. In a meeting on the 16 May Zeitz Trustees said they had specifically discussed with Coetzee that they would be ‘continuing with an investigation into the allegations.’
On 14 June the court agreed with the Trustees and found that Coetzee was liable to serve out his four week notice period and so could, under law, face a disciplinary process during this time.
Court papers also reveal that Coetzee was sent a letter by the Zeitz Trustees on the 15 May 2018 laying out ‘serious allegations’ of professional misconduct. Coetzee was asked to respond to these by the 29 May 2018.
A WhatsApp message sent to employees of Zeitz, and seen by ArtThrob, confirmed that employees at the Museum were eager to proceed with disciplinary action against Coetzee.
All parties agreed in court that Coetzee’s final day of employment was the 22 June 2018.