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Aug 3, 2011

Gilharry Bus case drives forward in Court

Fred Lumor

The fleet of buses of veteran operator, Froylan Gilharry, remains parked at his company’s garage in Corozal Town tonight. His fifty-eight employee were sent home in mid-June when the Transport Department re-scheduled a number of runs across the western and northern zones soon after the conflict among bus operators and government over runs granted to West Line. The bus line, which would have been directly affected by the drastic changes, subsequently shut down its operation over a month and a half ago.  Gilharry’s legal battle against the Ministry of Transport continued today in the chamber of Justice Oswell Legall where a judicial review was heard to challenge the new runs that were granted to his company.  Today senior counsel Fred Lumor explained the technical arguments in the case.

Fred Lumor, Attorney for Froylan Gilharry

“We had a hearing which was in two stages.  The first stage is that the government side has taken objection to the whole proceedings that we have filed.  It’s kind of legally technical but I will summarize for you.  Basically they are saying that before you commence an action against any government office or public authority you need to give one month’s notice of your intention to do so and they say that this law also applies to judicial review applications as it we call it.  So we had to deal with that first.  Our position is that historically that is not the law.  So we have given a bundle of legal documents to the court to show that that legal objection should not be sustained.  Then after that we went into the merits of the case itself.  That is for the court to investigate whether the Transport Board or the Minister of Transport revoked the bus permits issued to Froylan Gilharry’s bus service and the judge heard both parts.  We advanced our arguments to the court and then the court has given us two weeks to go back and prepare what we call legal submissions encompassing all our arguments and bringing it to court and then the court will give us a date when it will deliver judgment in the matter. One of the things that, the argument they made is that Mr. Gilharry put in an application for renewal of a bus permit but he didn’t pay for the application.  So in the affidavit they filed in court they say his application is languishing.  That is the word they used somewhere in the Transport Department and then I have pointed out the law to the judge that you don’t pay for applications, you pay for road permits.  So I told the court that that is not any serious argument to be considered.”

Gilharry’s position is that the Transport Board acted illegally in granting new runs without consulting him.  Legal action on the matter was filed on the heels of a countrywide shutdown of the transportation industry which was effected a few weeks prior, in the wake of failed negotiations by the Belizean Bus Association with the Government of Belize over bus routes issued to West Line.

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1 Response for “Gilharry Bus case drives forward in Court”

  1. Earl Grey says:



    THIS IS NOT LAND OF THE FREE!!!!…any more.

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