Breytenbach devastated by Labour Court setback – lawyer
NATIONAL Prosecuting Authority ( NPA) prosecutor Glynnis Breytenbach will apply for leave to appeal after her application to be reinstated in her job was dismissed by the Labour Court in Joburg yesterday.
“The application was dismissed,” Breytenbach said after proceedings, declining to comment further. But her lawyer, Gerhard Wagenaar, said they would definitely appeal. They would comment further after studying the judgment.
According to the judgment, Breytenbach indicated her intention to refer the dispute to the bargaining council in an “alternative prayer for interim relief ”.
“That is the appropriate forum for the dispute to be heard,” the judgment said.
The urgent application was for her to get her job back as regional head of the NPA’s specialised commercial crime unit in Pretoria.
Wagenaar said Breytenbach was “devastated”.
“It appears the court is of the view that this court does not have jurisdiction to entertain the application,” he said, adding that if leave to appeal was also dismissed they might launch a petition to a higher forum.
Earlier this month, Judge Hilary Rabkin-Naicker heard arguments from lawyers representing the NPA and Breytenbach.
Andrew Redding SC, for Breytenbach, submitted that her new job was not the same as the one she had before her suspension in April last year.
“The position to which she has been transferred is in no way the equivalent of the position she used to hold,” said Redding.
He submitted that the NPA still considered Breytenbach suspended. He said that was based on letters between her lawyer and the NPA after she was cleared at a disciplinary hearing on May 27 of all 15 charges against her.
The following day, the NPA announced it would bring a court challenge against the ruling because it considered the findings “factually incorrect and legally unsustainable”.
The NPA wanted to place Breytenbach on special leave pending a review of the disciplinary hearing’s findings. At a meeting held about Breytenbach’s return to work, she was told there were allegations of misconduct against her.
“(The NPA) is doing all it can do to prevent Breytenbach from getting her hands on the docket of (former police crime intelligence head Richard) Mdluli,” Redding said. – Sapa
IN LIMBO: Glynnis Breytenbach’s wish has not been granted.