Chief Justice of ECSC says court interference on the rise

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Chief Justice of ECSC says court interference on the rise
Chief Justice of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court, Dame Janice M Pereira delivers remarks in St Lucia at the opening of the law year.
Chief Justice of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court, Dame Janice M Pereira delivers remarks in St Lucia at the opening of the law year.
Chief Justice of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court, Dame Janice M Pereira delivers remarks in St Lucia at the opening of the law year.

A statement by Chief Justice of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) regarding growing interference in the justice system, is being used to bolster the case of residents who think it is “not yet” time to adopt the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) as the final appellate court.

Yesterday, Dame Janice Pereria said in a widely broadcast address to mark the opening of the new law year that “attempts at judicial interference are on the rise”.

She did not give specifics, but indicated that “these attempts emanate from places and persons and by methods which you would least expect”.

The sub-region’s top judicial officer told colleagues to remain “resolute and focused in their mandate to ensure equal access to justice and equal justice”.

“They must fiercely, unhesitatingly, and without fear or favour, guard and defend their role as protectors and enforcers of the rule of law; the guardians of our constitutions,” she said.

It is the first time since taking up the position of Chief Justice that Dame Janice has so boldly spoken to matters relating to interference which has, for a long time, been a cause for fear among members of the public.

She said that it was time to stop pretending that the problem did not exist but stressed that there had only been “attempts”.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. The comments on this thread are really disheartening. The mere fact that the Chief Justice would speak out so forcefully about interference in the judiciary is an example of exactly how much the court guards its independence. In this region we focus entirely on the politician and widely ignore the work of the judiciary itself. The fact that judges can speak out to protect their independence is what is important. What the politician does means nothing if judges do now allow themselves to be wrongly influenced. The CCJ has been doing just that for 11 years and is an institution that is to be commended not denigrated because of what we think about politicians.

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    • They set set up a retirement court to rest their posteriors after failing politically. Just watch this carefully as this unfolds.

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  2. reading the comments on here is disheartening. The fact that judges of the court are standing up against political interference goes precisely to show that the court is not bowing to political pressure. The sad thing about the CCJ debate is that we are taking our feelings about politicians and ascribing it to the Court. The Chief Justices comments show that the court is in fact independent and will speak out anytime there is an attempt at interference and in no way undermines the good work of the CCJ. She is in effect telling the politicians to stay out and this is the true hallmark of an independent court.

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  3. Just as the US imposed sanctions on the st.lucia police because of alleged extra judicial killings, then I feel the US should impose sanctions on any island that joins the ccj. This organization is contaminated with political influence and is sure to to corrupt our justice system especially as Kenny Anthony has ambitious interest in picking up the top job.

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  4. Constitution protects our freedom. If we have issues with the constitution there is a way to fix it through a referendum. People should find it difficult when those who are suppose to defend and protect the constitution and rule of law interfere. Tell me a case is filed and a result can be gained only to suit a political interest prior or after elections. While the people seat on remand for years at the university. This issue of returning offenders is systematic. The law cannot to be for a selected few. The truth is coming out and something needs to be done. CCJ is only a political joke as those who favour it will go to extremes to say our constitution has an error in order to make it our final court of appeal. But anything goes in this part o the world a politician or high commissioner or prosecutor can be magistrate or a judge in 2016. Welcome to Justus

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  5. Ahhh remember the Mario Mchel Scenario in StKitts where it took the privy council to throw it out? Also it was the same mario michel on the bench of the court of appeal for the Chastanet case but yet he is here prancing for the SLP. Madame you have just highlight what we have already known and we hope grenadians do not make the mistake of making the CCJ their final court

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  6. That is why they can preach Paul, especially those who are hoping for retirement on the Bench as ex-Ps, I want no damn part of CCJ. Crarp is crap.

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