Jobless magistrate loses appeal

Comment on this story


Copy of Copy of Copy of IOL court justice scales [1]

Independent Newspapers

.

Bloemfontein - The Supreme Court of Appeal found against a Randburg magistrate on Friday who sued his employers for loss of income after he resigned due to problems with his boss.

The SCA upheld an appeal by the minister of justice and constitutional development against an award for damages of more than R9.4 million in favour of former magistrate Frederick Reinecke.

Reinecke, a Randburg relief magistrate, alleged that he resigned in 2002 due to victimisation and discrimination against him by the then chief magistrate at Randburg.

He said his working circumstances were intolerable and he had resigned.

Reinecke further submitted that his leaving his job amounted to constructive dismissal that amounted to repudiation of his employment contract.

The SCA held the case rested upon the existence of a contract of employment and whether Reinecke could contend the chief magistrate's conduct amounted to a repudiation of such a contract.

In a unanimous decision, the court held it was not clear whether magistrates in South Africa were still employed by the state.

Even if they were, their discharge from service could only be effected through statutory mechanisms, laid down in the Magistrates Act 1993 and not the conduct of a chief magistrate.

The SCA found the remedies for any such mistreatment were not contractual but statutory and did not include a claim for damages on the basis forwarded by Reinecke.

The appeal was upheld and the award of damages set aside.

Sapa


sign up
 
 

Comment Guidelines



  1. Please read our comment guidelines.
  2. Login and register, if you haven’ t already.
  3. Write your comment in the block below and click (Post As)
  4. Has a comment offended you? Hover your mouse over the comment and wait until a small triangle appears on the right-hand side. Click triangle () and select "Flag as inappropriate". Our moderators will take action if need be.

     

Join us on

IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks

Business Directory