$1million lawsuit against Union referred to mediation

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FORMER MANU SAMOA SEVENS COACH: Damian McGrath.

FORMER MANU SAMOA SEVENS COACH: Damian McGrath. (Photo: File)

The Supreme Court has referred the lawsuit by Manu Samoa Sevens former coach, Damian McGrath, to mediation.

The decision was made by Justice Vui Clarence Nelson earlier this week.

McGrath, who is now coaching Canada, is seeking $1million from the Samoa Rugby Union.

The lawsuit targets the S.R.U. over the removal of McGrath from his position as the head coach of Manu Samoa 7s earlier this year. 

McGrath is taking legal action for alleged defamation of character and wrongful dismissal over his position.

McGrath was appointed as head coach for Manu Samoa 7’s in August 2015. 

When McGrath’s appointment was announced Rugby C.E.O. Faleomavaega Vincent Fepuleai said he believed McGrath’s appointment was an opportunity for some much-needed invigoration of the Manu Samoa Seven’s programme. 

His appointment was made after the selected panel approved him from more than 20 applications for the position. 

However, after Manu Samoa 7’s failed to qualify for the 2016 Olympics in Rio, the decision to sack him was taken.

Samoa is now coached by former New Zealand Sevens coach, Sir Gordon Tietjens.

According to Radio New Zealand, Justice Vui said mediation on grievances between the head coach and the union was part of the contract but it didn't happen when the Union terminated McGrath's contract last year.

The plaintiff has sought mediation but the S.R.U told the court it had enough evidence and wanted the court case to proceed.

Justice Nelson said 75 percent of impossible cases are settled by mediation.

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