Top judge wants regional justice
PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad – Chief Justice Ivor Archie has urged Trinidad and Tobago to join the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) saying that after 48 years of political independence “it astonishes me that there is even a debate about whether the CCJ should be our final appellate court”.
The CCJ was established in 2001 as a replacement for the London-based Privy Council.
But while most of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries have signed on to the Original Jurisdiction that also serves as a tribunal interpreting the Treaty of Chaguaramas that governs the regional integration movement, only Barbados, Guyana and Belize are members of the Appellate Jurisdiction of the Trinidad-based court.
“If we have the moral and intellectual capacity to run our own countries in the region, why can we not judge ourselves” said Archie.
“. . . the notion that somehow we will receive a superior form of justice from London bespeaks a self-doubt and an unwillingness to take responsibility for our jurisprudential self-determination,” Archie added. (CMC)