Oct 27, 2021 News
Kaieteur News – Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly, Lenox Shuman is calling upon President Irfaan Ali to consult with Leader of the Opposition, Joseph Harmon, to make substantive appointments to the posts of Chancellor of the Judiciary, Chief Justice (CJ), as well as the Commissioner of Police and Chief of Staff of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF).
In a letter to the President, Shuman noted that all four critical positions are filled by persons, who were appointed in an acting capacity only.
“I bring to your attention the concerns at the weakened state of the judicial arm of government with hopes of persuading you to rectify them. Currently there are four critical acting appointments, namely, the Chief Justice (Ag), the Chancellor of the Judiciary (Ag), the Commissioner of Police (Ag), and the Chief of Staff (Ag),” Shuman stated.
In his letter, the Deputy Speaker noted, too, that the Ali’s administration marked the completion of its first year in office on 2 August, 2021, without making the appointments, despite calls by the previous President of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ), Sir Dennis Byron, and the current President, Justice Adrian Saunders, for the confirmation of a substantive Chancellor of the Judiciary and CJ.
He stressed that: “For about a decade and a half – since 2005 – the Judges holding the positions of Chancellor and Chief Justice have been acting in these positions.”
In this regard, he referenced the November 2017 comments of Sir Dennis Byron, former President of the CCJ. The former CCJ Head had called for the confirmation of the acting appointments of the Chancellor and Chief Justice.
Sir Dennis said: “This situation has moved well beyond what ought to be acceptable in a modern democracy where respect for the rule of law is maintained. The constitution envisages the judiciary of Guyana to be headed by officials, who are substantively appointed, and enjoy all the legal and institutional mechanisms to secure their tenure. Anything otherwise is, to my mind, a violation of the spirit and intent of the constitution.”
Further, Shuman stressed that, having regards to the fact that Article 127(1) of the Constitution provides that, “the Chancellor and the Chief Justice shall each be appointed by the President, acting after obtaining the agreement of the Leader of the Opposition.” The President should urgently confer with the Leader of the Opposition with a view to securing his agreement for substantive appointments to these positions.
He stressed that failure to rectify the omission to fill these positions with substantive appointments means the continuing “violation of the spirit and intent of the constitution.”
Shuman alluded to the fact that the Constitution of Guyana provides that the Court of Appeal shall consist of a Chancellor, Chief Justice and such number of Justices, as shall be prescribed by Parliament.
“The Constitution also provides that all courts and persons presiding over the courts shall exercise their functions independently of the control and direction of any other person and authority; and shall be free and independent from political, executive and any other form of direction and control,” Shuman added.
With regard to Harmon, the Deputy Speaker said he is cognizant of Ali’s position in relation to the Leader of the Opposition —which is that he must publically accept his (Ali’s) government as legitimate before any consultation is made.
Shuman nonetheless reasoned, “in his accepting the role of Leader of the Opposition, Joseph Harmon has acknowledged the legitimacy of the administration and as such, leaves no obstacle in undertaking the consultative process for such appointments.”
The Deputy Speaker, therefore, proposed that the path is unobstructed to commence any and all processes requiring consultation with the Leader of the Opposition.
“I therefore humbly urge Your Excellency to act on this matter as soon as possible and, hoping that you would so do, I assure Your Excellency of my highest consideration,” Shuman added.
Nov 29, 2021Kaieteur News –Both semifinal matches of the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) Academy Training Center (ATC) Challenge Trophy competition were contested yesterday at the National Training Center...
Nov 29, 2021
Nov 29, 2021
Nov 29, 2021
Nov 29, 2021
Nov 28, 2021
By Sir Ronald Sanders Kaieteur News – COP26 in Glasgow offered no hope to small island states which continue to face... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]