Supreme Court accused of irregularities by officials

By Linda Straker
HBN Grenada

ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada, September 20, 2007 – Legal advisor to Grenada’s Cabinet, Hugh Wildman, believes that there is a concerted effort among officials of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court to frustrate judges from dealing with issue of dual citizenship of Grenada MP, Peter David.

‘I believe that there are some grubby hands operating behind the scenes and the people should know about it,” said Wildman in a news conference Tuesday, hours after the Court dismissed the government’s application for special leave to the Privy Council on the matter.

“The judiciary is treating this matter as if it is some kind of trivial issue and is dragging it out until the next election, added Wildman. “But I want Mr. David to know that it will be worst for him if the matter goes into the next general elections.”

Wildman explained that when the matter was first challenged in the Court Justice Kenneth Benjamin ruled that the matter was filed too late because the 21 days allowed under the election act to file for a petition had already gone.

“Justice Benjamin dismissed the application of the attorney general for leave to appeal holding that the attorney general had no right to appeal under Section 37 of the constitution,” he said, while explaining that the attorney general further applied to the Court of Appeal and that application was heard on via teleconference with Justice Gordon.

The legal advisor said that on that occasion, Justice Gordon, sitting as a judge of the Court of Appeal, dismissed the application and held that no leave was required to appeal Justice Benjamin’s decision as his ruling was a final decision.

The legal battle regarding Peter David citizenship began in January 2006 when Attorney General Elvin Nimrod said that he had evidence to proof that David had violated the constitution because he was the holder of a foreign citizenship.

David later revealed that he is the holder of a Canadian citizenship and did not see the need to renounce because Grenada’s constitution provides for commonwealth citizens to be a Member of Parliament. He is the presently represents the constituency of the town of St. George in the House of Representatives. –