To review certain conduct in the Labour Court, the Court’s rules require that applications be brought within very strict timelines. In this case, a review was launched some eight months late. Being so out of time, the applicant simultaneously applied for the Court’s condonation -colloquially, legal forgiveness – for the late filing.
In his reasons for judgment, the Acting Judge opined that the rules of the Court strive to provide for effective and expeditious resolution of labour disputes. As such condonation is not granted as a matter of course.
As such, in instances where no reasonable and acceptable explanation for the delay exists, the consideration of the prospects of success are immaterial. Whereas, on the flip side, where no prospects exist, no matter how compelling the explanation for the delay is, the granting condonation would be an exercise in futility.
As such, the granting of condonation has become the exception and not the rule.
The Labour Court’s tough approach is most welcome.
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