—(1) A Court shall have power in relation to a trade dispute of which it has cognizance to make an award (including an interim award) relating to all or any of the industrial matters in dispute.
(2) A Court shall not consider a dispute relating to the dismissal of an employee or make an award relating to the reinstatement of an employee except in circumstances arising out of a contravention of section 82.
(3) Notwithstanding subsection (2), where an employee considers that he has been dismissed without just cause or excuse by his employer, in circumstances other than those arising out of a contravention of section 82, he may, within one month of such dismissal, make, through his trade union, representations in writing to the Minister to be reinstated in his former employment.
(4) The Minister may, before making a decision on any such representations, by writing under his hand request the Commissioner to inquire into the dismissal and report whether in his opinion the dismissal is without just cause or excuse.
(5) If the Minister decides to deal with the representations himself, he shall before making a decision thereon give an opportunity to the employer to make representations in writing as to why he considered the dismissal of the employee to be justified.
(6) If, after considering the representations of the trade union and of the employer (if any) and any report made by the Commissioner under subsection (4), the Minister is satisfied that the employee has been dismissed without just cause or excuse, he may, notwithstanding any rule of law or agreement to the contrary, direct the employer —
to reinstate the employee in his former employment and to pay the employee an amount that is equivalent to the wages that the employee would have earned had he not been dismissed by the employer; or
to pay such amount of wages as compensation as may be determined by the Minister.
(7) The employer shall comply with the direction of the Minister under subsection (6).
(8) The decision of the Minister on any representations made under this section shall be final and conclusive and shall not be challenged in any court or in a Court established under this Act.
(9) Any direction by the Minister under subsection (6) shall operate as a bar to any action for damages by the employee in any court in respect of the wrongful dismissal.
(10) An employer who fails to comply with the direction of the Minister under subsection (6) shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction by a District Court to a fine not exceeding $10,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or to both.
[36/2010 wef 01/02/2011]
(11) Where an amount to be paid under subsection (6) is not paid in accordance with the direction of the Minister and the employer has been convicted of an offence under subsection (10), the amount, or so much thereof as remains unpaid, shall be recoverable by a District Court as if it were a fine and the amount so recovered shall be paid to the employee entitled under the direction.