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NJ v Thurrock Clinical Commissioning Group
The High Court has ruled that a CCG acted unlawfully in excluding a GP from participating in the election to its Board.
Dr. NR is a GP and Interim Accountable Officer of the Respondent. NJ had been refused to serve as the Substantive Accountable Officer of the CCG following intervention by the NHSE. NHSE raised various grievances including being discriminated on the ground of his race. Those grievances were not upheld. Following legal direction from NHSE, the Respondent terminated NR’s as interim Accountable officer, and appointed a substantive Accountable officer was appointed. NR applied to stand election as a Board member of the Respondent.
The Respondent claimed that NR was not eligible to participate in the election to the Board because he was dismissed as Interim Accountable post relying on Schedule 5 of the National Health Service (Clinical Commissioning Groups) Regulations 2012.
NR challenged his exclusion on the ground that his dismissal amounted to a redundancy, and dismissal in the Regulation ought to be give a purposive interpretation.
The CCG acted unlawfully in preventing the Claimant from participating in the election to the Board. Dismissal must be given a purposive interpretation. On a proper construction of the Regulation, and applying the law to the facts, NR dismissal amounted to a redundancy. The Regulation does not require any higher degree of probity. This is a matter essentially for the members of the CCG in accordance with the electoral process.
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