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The Gambia Independence Order 1965

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Appeals in respect of certain decisions affecting pensions benefits

9.—(1) The provisions of this section shall have effect for the purpose of enabling an officer to whom this section applies or his personal representatives to appeal against any of the following decisions, that is to say:—

(a)a decision of the Public Service Commission to give such concurrence as is required by section 113(1) or section 113(2) of the Constitution in relation to the refusal, withholding, reduction in amount or suspending of any pensions benefits in respect of such an officer's service as a public officer;

(b)a decision of any authority to remove such an officer from office if the consequence of the removal is that any pensions benefits cannot be granted in respect of the officer's service as a public officer; or

(c)a decision of any authority to take some other disciplinary action in relation to such an officer if the consequence of the action is, or in the opinion of the authority might be, to reduce the amount of any pensions benefits that may be granted in respect of the officer's service as a public officer.

(2) Where any such decision as is referred to in subsection (1) of this section is taken by any authority, the authority shall cause to be delivered to the officer concerned, or to his personal representatives, a written notice of that decision stating the time, not being less than twenty-eight days from the date on which the notice is delivered, within which he, or his personal representatives, may apply to the authority for the case to be referred to an Appeals Board.

(3) If application is duly made within the time stated in the notice, the authority shall notify the Prime Minister in writing of that application and the Prime Minister shall thereupon appoint an Appeals Board consisting of—

(a)one member selected by the Prime Minister;

(b)one member selected by an association representative of public officers or a professional body, nominated in either case by the applicant; and

(c)one member selected by the two other members jointly (or, in default of agreement between those members, by the Judicial Service Commission) who shall be the Chairman of the Board.

(4) The Appeals Board shall enquire into the facts of the case, and for that purpose—

(a)shall, if the applicant so requests in writing, hear the applicant either in person or by a legal representative of his choice, according to the terms of the request, and shall consider any representations that he wishes to make in writing;

(b)may hear any other person who, in the opinion of the Board, is able to give the Board information on the case; and

(c)shall have access to, and shall consider, all documents that were available to the authority concerned and shall also consider any further document relating to the case that may be produced by or on behalf of the applicant or the authority.

(5) When the Appeals Board has completed its consideration of the case, then—

(a)if the decision that is the subject of the reference to the Board is such a decision as is mentioned in paragraph (a) of subsection (1) of this section, the Board shall advise the Public Service Commission whether the decision should be affirmed, reversed or modified and the Commission shall act in accordance with that advice; and

(b)if the decision that is the subject of the reference to the Board is such a decision as is referred to in paragraph (b) or paragraph (c) of subsection (1) of this section, the Board shall not have power to advise the authority concerned to affirm, reverse or modify the decision but—

(i)where the officer has been removed from office the Board may direct that there shall be granted all or any part of the pensions benefits that, under any law, might have been granted in respect of his service as a public officer if he had retired voluntarily at the date of his removal and may direct that any law with respect to pensions benefits shall in any other respect that the Board may specify have effect as if he had so retired; and

(ii)where some other disciplinary action has been taken in relation to the officer the Board may direct that, on the grant of any pensions benefits under any law in respect of the officer's service as a public officer, those benefits shall be increased by such amount or shall be calculated in such manner as the Board may specify in order to offset all or any part of the reduction in the amount of those benefits that, in the opinion of the Board, would or might otherwise be a consequence of the disciplinary action,

and any direction given by the Board under this paragraph shall be complied with notwithstanding the provisions of any other law.

(6) In this section—

pensions benefitshas the meaning assigned to that expression in section 112 of the Constitution ; and

legal representative” means a person entitled to practise as a barrister or as a solicitor in The Gambia.

(7) This section applies to any officer who is the holder of a pensionable office and who is designated under the Overseas Service Aid Scheme.

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