My Domino’s Pizza parallel court testimony
I get it.
I understand why Christine Blasey Ford may have difficulty remembering other details but be crystal clear that she only drank one beer the night she alleges she was sexually assaulted by Brett Kavanaugh, United States president Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee.
Over the past 30 years or so, I have cultivated a habit of only having one alcoholic drink, usually beer, when I go partying, so I can assert that fact about my partying with Blasey-Ford-approximating certainty.
However, other details of my partying over the last 30 days, let alone the last 30 years, remain foggy.
Ask me which night I last saw my Nigerian “friend” Akin out partying in Norwich and I would struggle to tell you precisely.
I can assert that I have seen him out in the past two weeks.
But I could not even say whether it was a Friday or Saturday night, specifically.
The same is true for information about the circumstances under which I failed to meet a deadline for filing papers that were crucial to a legal claim that I had been pursuing against Domino’s Pizza in 2013.
Last July, thanks to the UK Supreme Court decision in UNISON v Lord Chancellor, that legal battle has now been resurrected.
Basically, the Supreme Court ruled that my struggle for justice against the Goliath businessman Surinder Kandola, principal of DPGS Ltd, the UK’s biggest Domino’s Pizza franchisee, was unlawfully derailed, or “crucified” (as I would say in keeping with the Christological focus of my cricketing cosmology) by a law that required me to pay questionably instituted court fees.
The judges ruled that “fees for employment tribunals are unlawful because they impede access to justice, and defy the rule of law”.
They ruled that by instituting the fee-mandating law the then Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Gideon Oliver Osborne had exceeded the powers of his office, acting ultra vires.
The 2013 Order of the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) striking out my appeal against the decision by Employment Judge Robin Postle in my claim of unfair dismissal by Domino’s Pizza was therefore voided.
I was informed of this and invited to resurrect my appeal against judge Postle’s decision in an email from the London EAT dated 13 October 2017.
However, having decided to do so, I was then informed (or reminded; I am not sure, frankly) that I had not filed the documentation needed for my appeal on time.
And as the Skeletal Argument that I filed with the EAT on Friday, 5 October indicates, the main obstacle to the success of my claim against DPGS Ltd/Domino’s Pizza at this stage, may be my flawed memory.
But I am hoping that in an upcoming EAT hearing later this month the court will look beyond my failing memory and other pertinent proofs of my human fallibility at the overriding public interests in my claim: interests that I assert, as humbly as matter-of-factly, are attested to by the coincidences and “cross fertilizations” between Blasey Ford’s and my crises and opportunities.
These start with the “one beer” parallel and extend to the links between Domino’s Pizza and 2012 US presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
Readers may recall that his meeting with president Donald Trump in 2016 attracted substantial media scrutiny.
The links between the Mormon Romney, the US and UK Supreme Courts and former Chancellor Osborne, may seem vague or tenuous to some but they are crystal clear to me.
My Skeletal Argument
This case is about recognizing the limitations of the letter of the law. It’s about recognizing and grasping opportunities to make the law more responsive to the variable, needs of justice: the variable needs of justice rooted in the fleshy, fallible fact based variability of the human condition.
It is about making the law’s responsiveness or lack of reponsiveness to the imperatives of change and difference: making the law responsive to the requirements of realism, even as it maintains the immutable, “indifferent”, ideally unchanging character of the ideal that we call justice.
And if I correctly understand Niall Boyce, the founding editor of the Lancet Psychiatry, there has never been a greater psycho-social need for the law to be responsive to human variability because of the totalitarian, group knowledge aggregating, individual identity undermining tendencies of the technological environment in which we now find ourselves.
If I understand Boyce correctly, he believes that this technological totalitarianism stems particularly from Amazon’s, Facebook’s, Google’s, Twitter’s and other tech giants’ domination of the knowledge industry.
This case is about how other kinds of giants, and in this case, the global fast food giant Domino’s Pizza, can be complicit, consciously or unconsciously, in the totalitarian, group knowledge aggregating, individual identity undermining tendencies of the technological environment of contemporary living.
The principle questions before us, at this juncture, are:
1. whether or not the reasons for my failure to file my appeal by 16:00 on September 30, 2013 amount to “a good excuse”, as per the reasons tendered by the Registrar for her rejection of my request for an extension of the 42 day period I was given to file that appeal (page 20 of the bundle I filed for this hearing)
2. whether or not this is “a rare and exceptional case in which the strict laws on time limits should be relaxed”, again as the registrar has helpfully outlined in her reasons.
Like the Registrar, I am relying on the words and discirnible intention of Lord Justice Sedley in Jurkowska v HLMAD Ltd (2008) EWCA , where he opined that “anyone who is caught out by the 42-day time limit has, barring something quite exceptional, only himself or hersef to blame for leaving it so late to institute their appeal”.
Unlike the Registrar, I am contending that the standard of “something quite exceptional” applies in this case.
That something quite exceptional is, at least partly, the mental funk and psychological miasma in which I found myself, not just for the duration of the 42-day period in which I was required to file an appeal, but for much of the time since I was dismissed by DPGS Ltd t/a Domino’s Pizza.
I am contending that especially on June 21, 2013, when Employment Judge Postle dismissed my unfair dismissal claim, I was subjected to a severe, cynical psychological onslaught.
I am contending that consciously or uncosciously, Employment Judge Postle perpetrated an eggregious act of indirect aggression against me that approximates the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the US, on a micro level, individual scale.
I am saying that given the perpetration of such indirect violence, continued and sustained by BBC reporter Mike Liggins and other individuals and organizations I have previously referenced elsewhere (pages 21 to 24 of the bundle I have submitted) and to which I would add Lloyds Bank, if I have previously neglected to list that fine institution, some observers might think the fact that I managed to file an appeal at all in 2013 is something of a miracle!
I for one, think that the fact that I remain of a sound mind despite all that I have suffered at the hands of Domino’s Pizza, Employment Judge Postle, the BBC and other entities is “quite exceptional”.
I think that contrary to the Registrar, the average, reasonable person, observing the specifics of this “David vs Goliath” battle, cannot help but conclude that it constitutes a “rare and exceptional case” in which the strict laws on time limits should be relaxed, at least for its public interest implications.
Those implications have as much to do with DPGS Domino’s Pizza’s links to the UEA, Michael Gove MP, Bain Capital, Mitt Romney and the current US president Donald Trump, as anything else.
As I indicated in one online campaign I started since my dismissal from Dominos Pizza, this case is about the identity and integrity of the Goliath “Raj Kandola” (as DPGS principal Surinder Kandola calls himself in at least one item of correspondence I received during the grossly flawed disciplinary process to which I was subjected by him, Vinod Veerajaksha and other DPGS Ltd personnel.
According to my research, Turner v East Midlands Trains Limited Turner v East Midlands Trains Ltd  EWCA Civ 1470 has established that it is possible to fairly dismiss an employee for misconduct without direct evidence of his or her wrongdoing.
My question is, assuming that the “overriding objective” of the Practice Direction (Employment Appel Tribunal – Procedure) 2013, regarding “ensuring that the parties are on an equal footing”, is being followed in this instance, how much and/or what kind of circumstantial evidence will it take for the Registrar and the Employment Appeals Tribunal to be convinced that this case is on some levels, in some sense, like none other they have encountered before, or are likely to encounter again?
What will it take to make this court see that we may all be in the presence and process of creating a legal precedent?
To be continued….