High Court upholds freeze on appointment of administrators to 9 courts

High Court. (Sun Photo)

High Court has ruled in favor of orders issued by the Employment Tribunal to suspend the appointment of administrators to nine courts pending the outcome of a case lodged with the authority.

Department of Judicial Administration (DJA) made revisions to its policy for appointment of chief administrators to courts on October 23, 2019, dismissing administrators who failed to secure necessary marks.

Nine of the administrators who were dismissed lodged a case with the Employment Tribunal, asking that the authority declare their dismissal as unlawful and void.

In response to the case, Employment Tribunal issued separate orders to temporarily suspend appointing people to the vacated positions.

Though the orders were directed at DJA, they were appealed with the High Court by Judicial Service Commission (JSC).

High Court heard the appeal over the orders as one case, and ruled in favor of the Employment Tribunal with the unanimous consensus of all three judges on Wednesday.

The High Court ruled that appointing new people to the positions before the Employment Tribunal makes its decision regarding the dismissal of the nine people from the position of administrators will lead to far greater damages.

One of the nine administrators who were dismissed raised a procedural motion and argued JSC does not have the right to appeal the decision.

However, the High Court noted that DJA was established after dissolving the former DJA and placing it directly under JSC under the second revision to the JSC Act, ruling that there is no obstacle to JSC appealing the case as affairs related to administrative staff at courts depend on policies established by JSC.

The case was heard by Judge Mohamed Niyaz, Judge Mohamed Faisal and Judge Hussain Shaheed. Judge Niyaz presided over the bench.