Letters to the Editor

Let's resolve the final court issue

Thursday, June 14, 2018

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Dear Editor,

Recently I became so intrigued by the different arguments concerning whether the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) must be the final court in Jamaica, replacing the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, which is a British institution based in England.

Personally, I think there is an urgent need to review the Jamaican Constitution with the intention of making it more relevant to the needs of the Jamaican people.

The Privy Council is an institution which cannot now be reinvented as a part of the Caribbean moral, political or cultural order.

For this reason, I also think it is intellectual dishonesty to consider that the Privy Council can still enjoy a constitutional status as a right in modern Jamaica.

By now we must be mindful of the fact that the United Kingdom is no longer responsible for the affairs of Jamaica, and it is immoral for the retention of an external court, like the Privy Council, to have the final appellate authority for a developing country like Jamaica.

Certainly, it is full time to resolve the constitutional challenges which have kept Jamaica and other Caricom countries from adopting the CCJ as their highest appellate body.

Therefore, it is incumbent at this time that the powers that be, also the Jamaican Bar Association and the Cornwall Bar Association, let their voices be heard loudly in support of the idea of a regional appellate court to replace the Privy Council.

More than ever, I endorse the argument that, as a people, we must complete our independence with the establishment of a final court and so assert our constitutional sovereignty.

Valentine Pearson

Montego Bay, St James

valenempearson@yahoo.com

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