Eight months after Royston King was fired as the Town Clerk of Georgetown by the Local Government Commission, High Court Judge Simone Morris-Ramlall today quashed that decision.
However, the Judge ruled that an order for his reinstatement is inappropriate, particularly since there was no challenge to him being sent on administrative leave by the local Government Commission.
The status quo, she said, will be returned to the 18th September 2018, when he was sent on administrative leave.
The Judge ruled today that by acting on the advice of a Commission of Inquiry to dismiss Mr. King, the Local Government Commission unlawfully delegated its investigating power to a body that was not part of the Local Government Commission or any other body associated with the Commission.
Justice Morris-Ramlall said from all appearances, the Local Government Commission misconstrued its functions and powers when it formed the view that Article 74A of the Constitution and sections 14 and 19 of the Local Government Commission Act empowered the Commission to delegate its investigatory powers. She said by so doing, the Local Government Commission “committed an error of law and made an unlawful delegation”.
The Judge quashed the appointment of the Commission of Inquiry that investigated and advised that King be fired.
Justice Morris-Ramlall ruled that the Commission of Inquiry was void and therefore its conclusions, findings, recommendations and the evidence obtained by it have all been nullified.
The Local Government Commission was chided by the Judge for not conducting any additional investigation and only arriving at its decision to fire the Town Clerk based on the recommendation of the Commission of Inquiry which she declared unlawful.
The Judge said that given that the decision of the Local Government Commission was based on the unlawful delegation of its power to a Commission of Inquiry, its decision to fire the Town Clerk cannot stand and is therefore quashed.
The Commission of Inquiry was conducted by retired Chancellor, Justice Cecil Kennard, and its legality had always been challenged by the Attorney who represented the Town Clerk.