CCJ to hold sittings in Jamaica and Barbados for Shanique Myrie case

PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad, Tuesday March 5, 2013 – The Trinidad-based Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) will hold its first ever sitting in Jamaica next week to hear evidence from witnesses in the case in which a Jamaican national has sued Barbados.

Shanique Myrie, 25, who was granted leave by the CCJ to file the action, alleges that when she travelled to Barbados on March 14, 2011 she was discriminated against because of her nationality, subjected to a body cavity search, detained overnight in a cell and deported to Jamaica the following day.

Myrie also claimed that she was subjected to derogatory remarks by a Barbadian Immigration officer at the Grantley Adams International Airport and is asking the CCJ to determine the minimum standard of treatment applicable to CARICOM citizens moving around the region.

On September 27 last year, Jamaica was granted leave to intervene in the matter.

Myrie, through her attorneys, informed the CCJ that she could not afford to bring her witnesses to Port- of-Spain for the hearing and therefore she was unable to adequately present her case to the Court.

The CCJ said that it had explored the use of videoconferencing technology to take the evidence of the witnesses, but after consulting with attorneys it was decided that the evidence should be given in person and for this purpose the Court will sit in Jamaica to hear the evidence of the witnesses for the Claimant and the Intervener.

The CCJ will sit at the Jamaica Conference Centre from Monday until Friday and will hear testimony from 10 witnesses. It said it is paying for the costs of the sitting which include airfare, accommodation and its other expense while the Jamaica government will provide security for the Court.

The CCJ said it would also sit in Barbados from March 18 to 22 to hear the evidence of the witnesses of the Defendant.

The CCJ was established in 2011 to replace to London-based Privy Council as the region’s final court of appeal. It has both an original and appellate jurisdiction and also serves as an international tribunal interpreting the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas that governs the 15-member Caribbean Community (CARICOM) grouping including the CARICOM Single Market and Economy that allows for free movement of within the grouping.(CMC) Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)