Republic v. State Fishing Corporation Commission Of Enquiry (Chairman). Ex Parte Bannerman  Glr 536
The National Liberation Council (NLC) appointed a commission of inquiry to inquire into the management of the State Fishing Corporation (SFC). Following their investigations, allegations of larceny of 1,100 cartons of fish were made against the distribution marketing manager of SFC, Bannerman, and he was consequently dismissed through a letter from the office of the chairman of the commission. On a later date, the NLC also sent a letter dismissing Bannerman. Bannerman sought a writ of certiorari to quash the decision to suspend him on grounds that the commission had had no jurisdiction to suspend or dismiss.
1. Whether or not the commission of inquiry has jurisdiction to dismiss Bannerman.
2. Whether or not the NLC had the power to dismiss Bannerman.
1. The commission had no jurisdiction to dismiss Bannerman.
2. The NLC had no power to dismiss Bannerman under the current circumstances.
The court ruled that “the commission or its chairman in suspending the applicant acted in excess of their jurisdiction having regard to the terms of reference in paragraph 3 of the Commission of Enquiry (State Fishing Corporation), Instrument, 1967 (E.I. 6).” On the NLC’s subsequent dismission of Bannerman, the court held that the provisions of State Fishing Corporation Instrument (L.I 397) stipulates that the NLC may appoint and dismiss employees of the corporation only after it takes over the management of the Corporation in national interests. Before the NLC could thus dismiss an employee, it ought to have taken over the control and management of the corporation, and this was not the case.