Belize - Belize News - Channel5Belize.com - Great Belize Productions - Belize Breaking News
Home » Featured, Foreign Affairs, People & Places, Politics » Former A.G. turns on C.C.J. after court reversal
Nov 28, 2017

Former A.G. turns on C.C.J. after court reversal

Perhaps the biggest proponent for Belize’s signing on to the Caribbean Court of Justice as its final appellate jurisdiction in March 2015, was former Attorney General Wilfred Elrington.  He was the country’s chief legal officer at the time of the transition from the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council.  While he once advocated for the change in jurisdiction, he now feels slighted by a decision in respect of a lawsuit involving Progresso Heights Limited, a real estate company which he helped to establish. The C.C.J. ruled against him recently in that case, and despite the fact that he is obligated to honor that decision, he is now speaking openly against the court. His personal experience with the C.C.J. is, to a certain extent, a parallel as to why government may have made a poor decision in choosing the regional jurisdiction at the time it did.

 

Wilfred Elrington

Wilfred Elrington

“It’s ironic that it was under our administration that we signed on to the CCJ.”

 

Reporter

“You voted for it, you were Attorney General.”

 

Wilfred Elrington

“I voted for it, I advocated for it.  But I had personal experience with them and I can tell you that the decision which they gave against me was wrong, both in law and in fact and I am not afraid to say that.  I mean, I am bound to honor it, but it’s completely and totally wrong.  They seem to have been very hostile even before I was able to say a word, and I formed the view that they really hadn’t paid any attention to the position I took.  They seem to have taken the position that look, one: you are an attorney and you know people tend to think that attorneys are less than honest; and then you are a politician.  That is compounded because attorneys, politicians are not looked at or looked upon as being honest and so they just decided against me without really and truly listening to what I was saying and in fact looking at the arguments that I was putting forward.  So that has turned me off tremendously from any support that I had for the CCJ.  I am really, really very disappointed.”

 

Reporter

“So if you had to make the decision again today to advocate and vote in the parliament to go to the CCJ, what would be your vote today?”

 

Wilfred Elrington

“I would not encourage anybody to do so, unless…  You see, the CCJ like all final courts of appeal have nobody that can in fact bring them in line.  They can act with impunity.  What can you do if the final court fines against you?  You are virtually without resort.”

Be Sociable, Share!


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

Advertise Here

Leave a Reply

CAPTCHA Image
*