LAC Summary: Review of jurisdictional findings- different tests applicable to factual and jurisdictional findings- correctness test applicable to legal and jurisdictional findings- reasonableness test applicable to factual findings.  Labour Court misconstruing the test applicable to jurisdictional findings.

Jonsson Uniform Solutions (Pty) Ltd v Brown and Others (DA10/2012) [2014] ZALCJHB 32 [2014] JOL  32513 (13 February 2014)

Coram: Tlaletsi ADJP, C J Musi and Mokgoatlheng AJJA

Heard:           5 September 2013      Delivered:     13 February 2014

Appeal allowed and Labour Court judgment set aside.

[1]      This is an appeal against the judgment of the Labour Court (Cele J) wherein it found that the first respondent was dismissed and that such dismissal was substantively and procedurally unfair.  The appellant was ordered to pay the first respondent R616 000,00 which was the equivalent of eight months’ salary and outstanding leave pay to the amount of R8 983,33.  The appeal is with the leave of the court a quo.

[2]      The appellant (a clothing manufacturer whose place of business is in Durban) employed the first respondent as its Managing Director.  She earned R77 000,00 per month.

[3]      The appellant was commissioned to manufacture uniforms for Pick ‘n Pay, a national retail store.  During the end of September 2008 or the beginning of October 2008, the first respondent was informed about a problem with the Pick ‘n Pay stock.  They did not manufacture enough uniforms.  She requested the Operations Director, Mr Hilton Strauss and the Account Manager, Ms Stephanie Horning, to explain the lack of sufficient stock.  She then asked another Account Manager, Karen Oswald, to assist with the Pick ‘n Pay account.  Ms Oswald acquitted herself well and took all the necessary remedial steps.  The first respondent appraised the Chief Executive Director of the appellant, Mr Nick Jonsson about the status of the Pick ‘n Pay account.