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Decision in Hyatt case reserved

Randy Bennett

Decision in Hyatt case reserved

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THE JUDGE in the Hyatt Hotel case has reserved her decision without announcing a date.

Oral arguments before Justice Dr Sonia Richards in her chambers closed yesterday following two hours of submissions by Queen’s Counsel Hal Gollop and Barry Gale, said social activist and lawyer David Comissiong.

He had petitioned the High Court for a judicial review of the decision of Prime Minister and Minister of Planning Freundel Stuart to grant permission for construction of the hotel on Bay Street, but the latest arguments centred on Stuart’s counter contention that Comissiong had no legal standing in the matter.

Gollop appeared on behalf of the Prime Minister while Gale represented Mark Maloney whose company is behind the Hyatt project and they argued as to whether Comissiong as a “citizen” could legally challenge the decision to give the go-ahead to build the proposed hotel in Bay Street, St Michael.

Back in March, Comissiong lodged a case in an attempt to block construction of the US$100 million hotel until the substantive legal case was concluded; that is a judicial review of the Prime Minister’s decision claiming certain requirements had not been complied with.

Speaking to members of the media shortly after exiting the Supreme Court yesterday around 1 p.m., the social activist said he expected a decision to be made soon.

“The judge has indicated that she has reserved her decision and that she will be giving a decision in due course,” he said.

“The next date will be when she gives her decision, so obviously she won’t be able to put a date to that as she now has to look at all the material and all the submissions and addresses that were made.” 

He said he was also quite confident with the case he had put forward.

“Of course I feel confident, but I wouldn’t want to say too much publicly. The judge has heard the arguments on both sides and she will be giving a decision and we anticipate that we wouldn’t have to wait too long before giving a decision.

Other lawyers in the case did not speak to the media. (RB)