Attorney General, Senior Counsel Anil Nandlall has announced that the Government will be moving to the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) to challenge the decision of the Court of Appeal in the Parliamentary Secretaries’ case.
In upholding the decision of the High Court, the Court of Appeal, on Tuesday, ruled that Vickash Ramkissoon and Sarah Browne are unlawful Members of the National Assembly.
In her ruling, the Court of Appeal explained that both Ramkissoon and Browne formed part of the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) List of Candidates heading into the March 2020 Elections, but their names were not among the 33 names of persons extracted to take up seats in the National Assembly.
The Court said they cannot sit as non-voting members of the Assembly, having been part of PPP/C’s List of Candidates.
But the Attorney General believes that the decision is flawed.
“We will be appealing to the Caribbean Court of Justice because I believe that it is imperative that we clarify this area of the law,” the Attorney General said, while addressing the matter on his weekly programme – ‘Issues in the News.’
The Attorney General said many of the Court of Appeal’s decisions against the Government have been overturned by the CCJ, and it is Government’s hope that, this time around, the Court will provide clarity on who can be appointed non-voting members of the National Assembly.
“The Court of Appeal has ruled against us, as the Court of Appeal has done in many occasions, and we have appealed on those occasions to the Caribbean Court of Justice, and the Caribbean Court of Justice reversed the Court of Appeal. Again, we will appeal the Court of Appeal decision to the Caribbean Court of Justice, and we hope that the Caribbean Court of Justice will settle the law on this matter, and this very crucial constitutional question,” the Attorney General said.
The Court of Appeal also ruled that in this case, the Appellate Court was bound by the decision in the case of the Attorney General v. Desmond Morian.
In that case, both the High Court and Court of Appeal ruled that the then Minister within the Ministry of Social Protection, Keith Scott and the Minister of Citizenship Winston Felix could not have sit in the House as Technocrat Ministers on the basis that they were listed on the A Partnership for National Unity + Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) List of Candidates.
Though the Attorney General Anil Nandlall, while in Opposition, was the lead attorney representing Morian and won the two cases, he is now arguing against the very case.