January 06, 2008

More Work Needed For Regional Court

CCJ head wants more use to be made of regional court
Friday January 04 2008
The head of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) is hoping for more work for the regional court this year.

Barbados and Guyana are the only Caribbean Community (Caricom) countries that have signed on to the CCJ which has been in operation since 2005, but President Michael de la Bastide said one of his wishes for 2008 is for more use to be made of the court.

“The hope is that at least one or two of the other members states who signed the agreement establishing the court will accept the appellate jurisdiction of the court,” he told the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC).

“Also that use will be made of the original jurisdiction of the court for the purpose of enforcing the revised Treaty of Chaguaramas,” he added.

De la Bastide told CMC that the Trinidad-based court has made improvements over the last year.

“We’ve had to revise some of the rules of the court in light of the experience we’ve had in the last two years, particularly with regards to the applications for leave to appeal in the respective courts of appeal,” he said.

“There were some gaps which needed to be filled in order to make sure that everything proceeded properly and smoothly.”

The CCJ president also reported that the court received nine appeals from Guyana in 2007 which will have to go through the case management process before being heard.
He said those matters will be heard shortly.

The CCJ, which was established in February 2001, was inaugurated on 16 April, 2005.

Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, Suriname and Trinidad & Tobago were the states which originally signed on to the agreement, followed by Dominica and St. Vincent & the Grenadines two years later.

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