Practice Directions Back

PRE·TRIAL CONFERENCE:DIRECTIONS WHERE RETRENCHMENT ALLEGED
Directions to be addressed to parties in the event or an inadequate Pre-Trial minute.

After perusing the pleadings and the pre-trial minute in this matter, the Acting Judge President has issued the following direction: -

  1. ‘The applicant must indicate whether he admits that in general there was a need to retrench (and this is separate from the question whether there was a need to retrench him/her).

  2. If the applicant does not admit that there was in general a need to retrench, he/she must state the factual basis for his/her failure to admit this. Once he/she has done so, the respondent must give a response thereto.

  3. If the fairness or otherwise or the selection criteria used is in dispute, the applicant must state his/her basis for contending that such selection criteria was unfair.
    (This is separate from whether or not that selection criteria was applied fairly.)
    The respondent must then give a response thereto.

  4. If the fairness or otherwise or the manner in which the selection criteria was applied is in dispute, the respondent must state how the selection criteria was applied and the applicant must state the basis or his/her contention that applying the selection criteria in that manner was unfair. The respondent must give a response to that.

  5. If the applicant contends that someone else should have been selected for retrenchment in his/her place due to, for example, length or service and/or skills, he/she should give the respondent the name or such a person and the respondent must give a response thereto.

  6. The parties must prepare a supplementary pre-trial minute in which the applicant sets out in what respect he/she alleges that the termination or his/her services was procedurally unfair and the respondent sets out its response thereto.

  7. Furthermore if the respondent alleges that there was a consultation (and if that is one of the issues in dispute) and it has minutes of meetings on which it relies to contend that there was consultation, the parties must attempt to agree whether the contents of such minutes are a true reflection of what transpired at those meetings.

  8. If the applicant's case is that those meetings did not constitute consultation, he/she must indicate the basis of such allegation and the respondent must respond to such basis.

  9. If anyone or more of the issues that the parties are directed above to address are not part of either party's case, that must be stated in the supplementary pre-trial minute.

  10. The purpose of the above is not to expand the issues as they may presently appear from the statement of claim, the response thereto as well as the pre-trial minute already filed by the parties but it is to get the parties to apply their minds on such of these issues as may form part of the case of either the applicant or the respondent.

  11. Once the supplementary pre-trial minute dealing with the above issues has been filed, the registrar must refer the file in this matter to a judge for direction whether the matter can be allocated trial dates.

  12. The supplementary pre-trial minute must be filed on or before ...................... from the date of this direction.’