GROUNDUP

Prasa loses application for leave to appeal reinstating executives

By James Stent for GroundUp 13 May 2021

The Labour Court has found that three executives have been subjected to “unnecessary litigation” by PRASA in attempts to appeal their dismissal. (Archive photo: Barbara Maregele)

Judge finds grounds for appeal of Ngoye judgment ‘grossly misconceived’.

First published by GroundUp.

On Thursday, Acting Judge Moses Baloyi in the Johannesburg Labour Court dismissed an application for leave to appeal launched by the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) against the Court’s 2 March ruling. That ruling reinstated three executives — Martha Ngoye, Tiro Holele and Nkosinathi Khena. It came after Prasa executives were fired under the instruction of Prasa’s board in controversial circumstances in late January and early February.

On 3 March, Prasa Chairperson Leonard Ramatlakane indicated that Prasa would be appealing the March ruling, calling the decision “flawed in law”.

On 8 March Prasa Board member Smanga Sethene repeated this claim in a press conference at Langa station in Cape Town.

Prasa had sought to appeal the March ruling on three grounds. First, Prasa argued that the Labour Court did not have the required jurisdiction to determine the application. For this Prasa offered complex grounds, including that since Ngoye, Holele, and Khena’s case was based on purported unlawfulness by Prasa, their claims could not be adjudicated by the Labour Court.

Acting Judge Baloyi found this reasoning “grossly misconceived”.

Second, Prasa sought to appeal the ruling that the matter was urgent.

This was also summarily dismissed by Acting Judge Baloyi, who found that the court’s finding that the application be heard as an urgent matter was not appealable, as the court “has the inherent power to control its processes” and has discretionary powers.

Third, Prasa sought to appeal the costs order that was imposed by the court against the rail agency in the March ruling.

Here again, Prasa failed to show that the Court was unfair or improper in imposing costs.

Acting Judge Baloyi said Prasa had pursued an appeal “on a mere belief that the Labour Court’s findings cannot be left unchallenged”.

He also said that Ngoye, Holele, and Khena “have been subjected to an unnecessary litigation for leave to appeal that is devoid of reasonable prospects of success”. DM

Gallery

Comments - share your knowledge and experience

Please note you must be a Maverick Insider to comment. Sign up here or sign in if you are already an Insider.

Everybody has an opinion but not everyone has the knowledge and the experience to contribute meaningfully to a discussion. That’s what we want from our members. Help us learn with your expertise and insights on articles that we publish. We encourage different, respectful viewpoints to further our understanding of the world. View our comments policy here.

All Comments 2

  • The way SA’s state and pseudo-state actors all misread the phrase ‘justice for all’ as ‘justice for ***all’ makes me wish for a law punishing frivolous litigation, not just with cost damages but head shaving and a naked walk of shame, followed by the nun from GoT.

  • OUR BURNING PLANET

    Big game parks vs big farming: A battle for the ages on the Klaserie River

    By Kevin Bloom