THE Lusaka High Court has restored the case in which two female students have sued a lecture at Lusaka Apex Medical University and the institution for allegedly making them fail exams after the refused to give in to the lecturer’s sexual advances.
The case which was struck out last month due to failure by the parties involved to appear before court when the matter was slated for hearing, has been restored to the active cause list.
In this case, Sandra Mubanga and Carol Saili are seeking a declaration that Apex Medical University breached its contractual obligation to provide a conducive learning environment when it failed to consider their complaints of sexual harassment against its employee.
Mubanga and Saili claimed that Philistone Nyirenda, a lecturer and head of laboratory department at Apex, caused them to fail their exams after they refused to have sex with him on the promise that he would make them pass their exams.
The matter was scheduled for January 16, 2020 before High Court judge Wilfred Muma but both parties were not before court without justification for their absence, prompting the judge to remove the matter from the active cause list.
Judge Muma gave the parties liberty to restore the matter within 14 days from the date it was removed from the active cause list failure to which it would stand dismissed.
Mubanga and Saili, through their lawyer Chiwezi Ngoma of Simeza Sangwa and Associates, begged the court to restore the matter as they were desirous to prosecute it.
The duo explained that the reason for their non-attendance was that the notice of hearing was not placed in the pigeon hole assigned to the firm Simeza, Sangwa and Associates, who are co-advocates of the plaintiff and that they were not unaware of the date of hearing.
Ngoma stated that the failure to attend hearing was neither deliberate nor was it intended to show disrespect to the court.
Ruling on the matter, justice Muma restored the case to the active cause list and directed that further directions of the court were expected to be issued to the parties.