Greater Georgetown, Guyana – The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretary-General, His Excellency Edwin Carrington has supported the call for all CARICOM Member States to fully adopt the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) as the final Court of Appeal.
Echoing recent pleas by prominent legal practitioners including former Prime Minister and leader of the opposition in Saint Lucia, Dr the Honourable Kenny Anthony, to intensify the implementation of the CCJ, Secretary-General Carrington urged Members States which were yet to fully adopt the CCJ, to complete the process. So far, only Barbados and Guyana had taken that course of action.
In a letter to the press, the CARICOM Secretary-General also cited a statement by the Attorney-General of Trinidad and Tobago, the Honourable Bridgette Annisette-George, in which she informed her Parliament that only countries within the Caribbean and Mauritius had still been utilising the United Kingdom-based Privy Council as the final Court of Appeal.
Dr Anthony had declared in a recent lecture in Barbados that “countries which were at the forefront of the decolonisation process and anxious to claim their sovereignty” could now find “undisguised comfort in retaining the Privy Council.”
Emphasising the need for decisive action to fully operationalise the CCJ, Secretary-General Carrington reiterated an assertion made by current Chairman of CARICOM, the Honourable Dean Barrow, in which he stated in his New Year’s address that now is the time when “talk must give way to action”.
“What better way to demonstrate this action than for all Member States to adopt the CCJ as the Caribbean Community’s Final Court of Appeal,” Secretary-General Carrington said.
The CCJ was established in 2005 and although all 15 Member States of the Community have accepted its original jurisdiction as the sole court to adjudicate on matters pertaining to the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas, only Barbados and Guyana have adopted the CCJ as their final Court of Appeal.