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Jul 11, 2011

Bar Association’s declaratory comment on enforcement

From our checks, government has not yet filed an appeal at the Caribbean Court of Justice, as Prime Minister Dean Barrow said he would, against the June twenty-fourth ruling by three justices of the Court of Appeal, declaring that government’s acquisition of Telemedia back in August 2009, was unconstitutional, null and void. Ten days later, however, the Prime Minister went back to the House to “fix” the law to re-acquire the company for a different public purpose.  In the interim, the government continued to occupy Telemedia, saying that an order of acquisition was necessary because of the declaratory nature of the judgment. Notwithstanding, in many quarters there is concern over the rule of law or the flaunting of it. The Chamber of Commerce has already called on government to respect the rule of law and now the Bar association says government has a duty to obey the law as declared by the courts. Following a meeting of the Bar Association late last week, the attorneys issued a four paragraph press release today. In part it says: “Belize is a nation founded on the rule of law and our constitution is the supreme law. The Courts of Belize have the undisputed authority to determine what the law is, and they so by the judgments they pronounce, including declaratory judgments. A declaratory judgment is a pronouncement by the court of what the law is and what the rights of the parties are at a particular point in time. Declaratory judgments bind the parties to the proceedings in which they are made, including governments. The Government had a duty to obey the law as declared by the courts. In accordance with the rule of law, a party against whose interest a declaration has been made has a right of appeal, and where enforcement is sought, to apply to the court for orders staying such enforcement. The full extent and effect of the rights and obligations imposed or conferred by a declaratory judgment when in dispute, are for the courts to determine.” The release concludes by saying that there are differing views on the judgment which ought to be resolved. In essence, what the Bar seems to be saying is that in the case of Telemedia, the government should have applied for a stay against the judgment. Close to midnight on the day of the judgment, the government deployed security forces to the Telemedia headquarters to prevent the representatives from going back into the company.

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5 Responses for “Bar Association’s declaratory comment on enforcement”

  1. mike g says:

    AS A COMMON MAN IT WOULD SEEM TO ME THAT THE QUESTION IS WHAT IS THE DISPUTE? THERE IS NO DISPUTE ABOUT THE OWNER SHIP,THE ONLY DISPUTE WAS THE REASON FOR PUBLIC PURPOSE ACQUISITION .THE COURT RULED THAT THAT REASON WAS FLAWED THEREFORE ILLEGAL END OF STORY!!!!.

  2. Justice says:

    Barrow is a mad man. No matter what he will try to prove his power. Wish there was unity to overthrow this government!

  3. Roy Yates says:

    All these folks can play down the seriousness of what Dean Barrow has done, but the more serious wider world does not see this as something casual, so there will be serious consequences to bear. As the saying goes, there are many ways to skin the cat. Trust me, the word is getting around, and fast.

  4. Earl Grey says:

    ELECTIONS ARE COMING
    ELECTIONS ARE COMING
    ELECTIONS ARE COMING……………LEST THEY FORGET!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. Liberty and Freedom says:

    Mr. Barrow is fast becoming a Central American dictator. In disrespecting the rule of law, Mr. Barrow also disrespects the people of Belize. As Bob Marley famously sang “Stand Up For Your Rights”. Belize will become another “Banana Republic” if Belizeans do not vote Mr. Barrow out of office.

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