People’s Action Movement Leader – Lindsay Grant
Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
November 23, 2009 (CUOPM)
Several weeks after claiming at victory celebrations that High Court Judge Mr. Justice Errol Thomas had ordered that the old boundaries must be used in the next general elections, the Political Leader of the People’s Action Movement, (PAM), Mr. Lindsay Grant is expressing disgust with the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court.
He told a public meeting in George Street, New Town Sunday night that the Court is not ruling in PAM’s favour and as such other methods would have to be used.
“We cannot be blamed for what is about to take place. We cannot be blamed for what we are going to call upon you just now for. The time for action is now and the time to be resilient is now and the time to be sitting down silent done gone, done past,” said Mr. Grant.
He added: “it appears as though, the Courts can’t wuk, it appears as though talking can’t wuk, well if Court can’t wuk and talking can’t wuk, action (instability) will now have to reign and run in this country,” said Mr. Grant, who at previous meetings and interviews with the local media said the victory in the High Court had prevented the Constituency Boundaries Commission from presenting another report.
Lead attorney of the Government’s Legal Team, Mr. Anthony Astaphan was quick to respond at the time, stating: “absolutely no such order was made at all.”
Chairman of the Constituency Boundaries Commission (CBC), Mr. Anthony Johnson said following the ruling of Justice Thomas that the Constituency Boundaries Commission is still mandated to review the number and boundaries of the constituencies into which St. Kitts and Nevis is divided.
In a statement issued following a ruling of His Lordship Mr. Justice Errol Thomas, the CBC Chairman expressed extreme gratitude that the allegations of bias, bad faith and improper purpose leveled at the Constituency Boundaries Commission have been rejected by the High Court Judge in his 107-page judgment.
“The Honourable Judge rejected these allegations in stark language. Further, the Judge stated that the Claimants had no right to be heard or consulted by the CBC in making recommendations for boundary changes to the Governor General,” said attorney Johnson.
He noted that the High Court however for reasons explained in the judgment, determined that “our Report was null void and of no effect and the Proclamation which resulted from our Report is null, void and of no effect.”
“As a result, the Commission, by virtue of section 50 of the Constitution, is still mandated to review the number and boundaries of the constituencies into which St. Kitts and Nevis is divided and submit its Report to the Governor General,” said Mr. Johnson.
As the CBC continued meeting, the two Concerned Citizens Movement (CCM) members on the Constituency Boundaries Commission (CBC) resigned, but Mr. Astaphan said that the resignations will not prevent the constitutionally-appointed body from concluding its work and presenting its report to the Governor General.