Judgment No. 4612
The complaint is dismissed.
The complainant contests the decision to suspend her from duties with immediate effect.
suspension; complaint dismissed
[I]t is convenient to set out the legal principles applied by the Tribunal when considering a challenge to a suspension decision. The grounds for reviewing the exercise of the discretionary power to suspend are limited to questions of whether the decision was taken without authority, in breach of a rule of form or procedure, was based on an error of fact or law, involved an essential fact being overlooked or constituted an abuse of authority or if a clearly mistaken conclusion was drawn from the evidence (see, for example, Judgments 4452, consideration 7, 3037, consideration 9, 2698, consideration 9, and 2365, consideration 4(a)). According to the Tribunal’s case law, the suspension of an official is a provisional measure which in no way prejudges the decision on the substance of any disciplinary measure against her or him (see Judgments 2365, consideration 4(a) and 1927, consideration 5). However, as a restrictive measure on the staff member concerned, the suspension must have a legal basis, be justified by the needs of the organisation and be taken with due regard to the principle of proportionality. A staff member does not have a general right to be heard before a decision to suspend is made (see, for example, Judgment 4361, consideration 12).
ILOAT Judgment(s): 1927, 2365, 2698, 3037, 4361, 4452
suspension; judicial review; discretion; role of the tribunal
The Tribunal has acknowledged a doctrine of necessity (Judgments 4006, consideration 14, and 2757, consideration 19). That is, circumstances can arise where a decision maker, whether an individual or a body, is lawfully able to make a decision because it is unavoidable and necessary to do so where, in other circumstances, the individual or body should not exercise the decision-making power because to do so might involve a denial of due process.
ILOAT Judgment(s): 2757, 4006
internal appeals body; necessity