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May 8, 2014

Acting SolGen charts the way forward

Nigel Hawke

Following the CCJ’s decision, Acting Solicitor General Nigel Hawke told the media that the legal victory for Tomlinson is simply the beginning of what will be a protracted argument from all three parties involved in the claim.

 

Nigel Hawke, Acting Solicitor General, Belize

“Leave is granted.  This is just the first stage.  We objected to leave so special leave is being granted, so now we move to the substantive issues that will have to be argued.  They’ve been given seven days to file their originating application in respect of the claim.”

 

Reporter

“Sir, the president did mention that just the mere existence of these statutes in the law is punitive.  What’s your reaction to that?”

 

Nigel Hawke

“At this stage that is mentioned in the context of an application for special leave and all he had to establish was an arguable case.  At this point the court agreed that there is an arguable case and so we move to the next stage and that is where we are.” 

 

Reporter

“So what must the government now do in terms of defending the substantive matter?”

 

Nigel Hawke

“Well, we now wait for them to file their originating application then take it from there in terms of arguments and so.  So we’ll have full and extensive arguments now that leave has been granted.”

 

The CCJ maintains that the matter is open to dispute and that the sheer existence of the legislative provisions under scrutiny amounts to prejudice.  This is premised on the theory of law of the European Court of Human Rights and the UN Human Rights Committee.

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