Tales from the Courts – Sir Marston Gibson a FAILURE XIX

It was with more than passing interest that BU read the Nation article of 15 January 2014 entitled SLOW JUDGEMENTS HEAVILY CRITICIZED.

It is somewhat daunting to note that the Nation has only now espoused this cause as the result of cross-party agreement in the House led by former attorney general, Dale Marshall and supported by the PM and the present attorney general. This, after all, is an issue that BU – Tales from the Courts – has been resolute in airing for some years now and it appears that it is only now that a leading economist has publicly pointed out the obvious, that the demise of the justice system is almost completely responsible for the fall off and withdrawal of off-shore and foreign investment, that it now has been raised. Although, to be fair, last year in Toronto, the PM did serve notice that the justice system and courts had to be sorted out. But still his warning appears to have fallen in deaf ears and he himself has not done anything since.

Mr Marshall’s comments were somewhat confusing, even contradictory to us in one certain respect. The Nation reports:

“…that while the Supreme Court judges and the Registry staff did their best, Barbados clearly had a problem when the CCJ continued to lament delays in local judgements.”

Is that political-speak for, “The Registry from the Registrar down and the judges are incompetent and ought to be fired, but vote for me, because you know I will take it easy on you and protect your jobs?”

The whole thrust of Mr Marshall’s comments was centered on a delay in the delivery of judgements. So maybe he can expand on his statement and tell us how, since he is still owed a judgement from a retired judge (and we are certain we know which judge that is) the judges are doing their best. We are agog to hear his views.

But that is only a part of the problem. The delay in having matters set down for hearing and the continuation of adjourned hearings (hearings that are “part heard”) is also a major concern. So what contributed to the mess here?

Once he became CJ, David Simmons implemented a few very interesting rules that may not be known about by the general public.

FIRST, judges had been in the habit, once they started the hearing of a case, of consulting with counsel and setting a date for continuation if the matter had to be adjourned because it had run over its allotted time for hearing. Judges and counsel would consult their calendars and determine a date to continue the hearing. The judge in question would then inform the Registrar of that date and in these days of the computer, the Registry would be enabled to ensure that they booked future hearings for the judge around those dates. It is also fair to point out that, prior to a hearing, counsel on both sides are required to file a document with the court setting out how long they estimate the hearing will take, so that adequate time can be allocated.

But no. Sir David would have nothing to do with this practice of judges themselves setting dates for themselves and instead banned judged from setting dates for the continuation of part-heard cases and placed the responsibility of this into the hands of Mr. Murray, an officer in the Registry, but he had to consult Sir David first before scheduling the continuations. So, Sir David departed from the system used in most countries (like the UK, the USA and Canada) where the justice system is both efficient and timely, because, of course, he is MUCH brighter than anyone in those countries. The result? CHAOS. Mr Marshall pointed out that many attorneys had taken to suing judges over the delays. He is right. They have. And we know of no such case that has yet been set down for trial, some after as long as 3 years. Wonder why!!

In the past, BU followed the Kingsland matter as a result of an action on it before the Ontario courts in which Barbados, David Simmons, the PM and the Leader of the Opposition, amongst over 60 Bajans, had been sued. In doing so, the fact that the person behind the action in Ontario (Marjorie Knox) had been sued for fraud in connection with Kingsland, came to light. So, BU asked a question on what was happening with this fraud action, since nothing after 2009 has been heard and we are monitoring it carefully. We were astounded by the answers we got.

The case, No. 2279 of 2003 (which means that it was commenced in 2003) finally was scheduled for hearing starting January 29, 2009 before Worrell J. And indeed it was heard for five days, many witnesses examined and cross-examined and hundreds of pages of transcript evidence taken. And then, part-heard, it was adjourned and despite countless applications to the Registrar for it to be continued, continues to languish, 5 years later, during which time one of the summonsed witnesses, as yet unexamined, has died. Meanwhile, Knox has brought an application that the action be discharged on the basis of lack of prosecution by the Plaintiff, as if the Plaintiff has control over the matter once it goes for scheduling and has commenced hearing. This application by Knox’s attorney was heard before Alleyne J, who required no less than three hearing dates and affidavits to be filed in a matter that, frankly, BU would have thought was trite law and should be thrown out as frivolous and vexatious…..and after three full hearing dates and the expense of counsel and preparation of affidavits and written submissions, chargeable by Knox’s attorney (and we can prove this rate from the McKenzie Files) at $750 per hour for himself and $350 per hour for his junior) what does Alleyne J. do? Send it back to the Registrar to set it down before Worrell J to hear the application for dismissal.

The egregious part of this is that IF an action is filed against the attorney general for delay, Worrell J., who has no control over the process, will be joined with the AG as a defendant. That is a given. Although Worrell J. has no control whatever, any more than the parties do, over the scheduling.

But we are happy that Dale Marshall thinks, on the subject of judgements delinquent by as much as 10 years (some more and from judges in retirement – on pensions paid by the taxpayers/litigants) that Barbados’ judges are “doing their best”. God help us if that is an example their best, which, unfortunately, it is.

SECOND, there is the matter of probate. Here again, we see the brain-power of Sir David and former Registrar, Marva Clarke (now fortunately gone with, no doubt, full pension). Probate used to be a simple matter in Barbados. Attorneys used to file their documents and, if there were any perceived problems by the Registry (mostly imaginary and as the result of imperfect understanding of the requirements) counsel would go and examine the file, pay a call on the Registrar, and the matter would be clarified and sorted out and probate could proceed. Now, in order to examine the files, counsel must go to the Registry, enter a request in a book, then there is a three week wait (officially, although some counsel have been waiting a lot longer than that) and they can then examine the files one afternoon (Tuesday) a week between the hours of 2 and 3:30.

Given the extensive and expensive computer equipment installed at the White Elephant of Whitepark Road, can anyone explain to BU why these files, in the public domain, cannot be made available to counsel online? We know there is state of the art scanning equipment available. Are we to assume that the Registry staff is “doing its best” NOT to learn how to use it?

It is encouraging, nonetheless, that the demise of the justice system, and with it our off-shore and foreign investment market, has become a cross-party issue. And so it should be and we are only astounded that it has taken so long in light of the lamentable state of the economy. The rot started and proliferated under David Simmons as CJ (BLP) and is now perpetuated by the DLP’s choice of Chief Justice, Sir Marston Gibson. One disaster following another. The BLP is culpable for starting it and the DLP will be equally culpable if it does not cure it.

We are therefore encouraged by the stern comments of the PM and we assure him that we not only have ears to hear, but are listening (and watching) with total attention to see what he will do. After all, as one internationally famous jurist has said (and as we reported previously) “The independence of the judiciary is not absolute as long as they are paid by the taxpayers.”

So Barbados languishes in recession and as the rest of the major economies like the UK, the USA and Canada are in full economic recovery. Is there going to be a knock-on effect from this economic prosperity? For a country damned by the international press due to the actions of its Commissioner of Police (Dottin) and where the justice system has broken down to an extent that has all investment counselors and brokers worldwide putting Barbados on its no-go list? Does anyone think so? And does anyone think few statements in the House (cross-party or not) are likely to reassure investors so we can share in the recovery? We believe it will take aggressive actions, not words, to get anywhere.

67 comments

  • Perhaps we should second him to the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) , as it appears to be just as useless.
    http://jamaica-gleaner.com/latest/article.php?id=50599

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  • I am searching for something meaningful about the present CJ consistent with the headnote of this edition of the ‘Tales’. It seems to be about everyone and everything else but him,

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  • David wrote “So Barbados languishes in recession and as the rest of the major economies like the UK, the USA and Canada are in full economic recovery.”

    David Canada is not in full economic recovery.

    http://www.advisor.ca/news/economic/canadian-economic-growth-slower-than-expected-139593

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  • @Hants

    It is all relative when compared to the Caribbean.

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  • Want to reduce the backlog?

    Hire more staff. Work longer days and pay overtime.

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  • @Hants

    It is not so simple. We have discussed the all issues before right here.

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  • David we are experiencing a slowdown in the Canadian economy.

    That is the reality “on the ground.”

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  • On Hants’ “work longer days”……what time does the CJ knock off? From what I hear, the other judges themselves have lost confidence in him.

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  • So, Sir David departed from the system used in most countries (like the UK, the USA and Canada) where the justice system is both efficient and timely, because, of course, he is MUCH brighter than anyone in those countries. The result?

    Expand please.

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  • Is this the same C.J that this government broke all the rules for to bring here? Was he not suppose to be the saviour of the judicial system in Barbados? Dis someone say when he join the social society he would just be another C.J.? HOW RIGHT.

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  • David the problem with legal matters is they require reading, perusing and evaluating a lot of time consuming legal gobbleygook that a layman cannot understand.

    Some Canadian lawyers are now into cut and paste internet and fax based lawyering to save time and money but Barbados is not ready for that yet.

    We need Jeff Cumberbatch,Amused,RR and the BU legal gurus to give us a realistic assessment of the situation and if there is a solution to clearing the backlog.

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  • I thought David Simmons was bad, but Marston worse. He is a total bafoon just like Delisle Worrell, Fumble Start and Elliot Belgrave. If they were doing some worthwhile work, I could excuse the uglyness. But no brains and uglyness is a dangerous combination.

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  • june boy | January 18, 2014 at 7:22 PM |

    Is this the same C.J that this government broke all the rules for to bring here? Was he not suppose to be the saviour of the judicial system in Barbados? Dis someone say when he join the social society he would just be another C.J.? HOW RIGHT.
    ………………………………………………………………
    He is a good guitarist, that ‘s a plus with the some very people who brought him here, who themselves are good fiddlers, doing so while Bim burns. They are playing out of the same music sheet.

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  • ….Perhaps some of the antiquated rules needed to be broken….

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  • I does forget that the present PM is a lawyer
    As a matter of fact , I does forget that the present PM is a Prime Minister.
    Worst than that, I does forget that the present Prime Minister is –ALIVE !!!!!

    YOU tell me to fuhget dat my grandmudda was born right thereso
    Allright , I say I shall beat you so
    You tell me to fuhget, it is there I want my own thrilldren to grow,
    Allright I say I shall piss in a po

    -===Gabby’s Emmerton corrupted
    but representing a cocox of the present Prime Minister

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  • 4 black big head , big nose ugly cunts doing bare cuntery in the cuntry

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  • The prob is not only with the CJ but all members who make up the judicial system. Lawyers are general silent on most issues as they just interested in their FEES.

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  • For a country damned by the international press due to the actions of its Commissioner of Police (Dottin) and where the justice system has broken down to an extent that has all investment counselors and brokers worldwide putting Barbados on its no-go list?

    WHERE IS THE EVIDENCE AGAINST DOTTIN ?
    WHAT CASE HAS DOTTIN BEEN CALLED ON TO ANSWER ?
    WHAT DOES DAMNED BY THE INTERNATIONAL PRESS MEANS ?

    BE CAREFUL
    I THINK THAT THIS BLOG IS GOING TO COME UNDER SOME PRESSURE- FROM THE BARBADOS TON TON MACOUTES JUST NOW

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  • LAWYERS in Barbados are not good Leaders or Business people. To prove this find how law practices are structured and managed.

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  • The court administration/staff is made up of many unskilled/ and under-qualified persons. Thanks to politics again. They dont use the thousand of tax dollars that are invest in technology. Still comfortable writing in books and alot of backward outdated systems that proves useless in these modern time.

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  • BU understands Dottin has secured the services of Sir David to broker a deal.

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  • Hants
    Traditionally,Canada was not listed as a country in recession as did the US,UK,EU.It was then the opinon that the shale oil saved them.
    David
    Is the CJ an American citizen?If so is he sworn to uphold things American as opposed to things Barbadian?To which country is his first duty?

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  • The CJ came into a system where he came up against resistance from the people that were there before him and was brained wash into they ways and practices. The courts and their registries need COMPETENT & SKILL People to do the job and advance the system.

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  • Cannot Blame the CJ and the court for the slow justice. Many lawyers in BARBADOS DO NOT KNOW LAW or PRACTICE PROCEDURES. to put it in simple terms there are NOT BRIGHT. There are just about the MONEY and Clients should be aware of who they choose to represent them as some are clueless hence some matter are delayed.

    Some lawyers dont not attend court when scheduled creating many adjournments and the Judges not interested in hearing the matters as it less work for them.

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  • PLANTATION DEEDS FROM 1926 TO 2014 , MASSIVE FRAUD ,LAND TAX BILLS AND NO DEEDS OF BARBADOS, BLPand DLP=Massive Fruad

    We see you all are now getting the picture or should we say the BIG SHOW.
    Until more pain is to be had some will want to act stupid or dumb until all Hell is let loose .
    No pain , no gain , It can be seen Barbados needs mush more pain, until they stand alone in the World ,

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  • JUST ASKING | January 18, 2014 at 9:01 PM |

    4 black big head , big nose ugly cunts doing bare cuntery in the cuntry
    …………………………………………………………………………
    a bit crude but nevertheless………………………………………………..

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  • “Came into a system…cannot blame the CJ”

    MaxStar says in his fake vernacular.

    Might the blogger, who works in broad brush strokes, tell us whether this CJ is responsible for anything he considers a matter of concern.

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  • How long have poor bajans been fcuked up by the so called justice system? It didn’t start yesterday.What have any of you people on this blog done to arrest the problem? Have any of you organised marches, or signing of petitions? Have any of you come together and demanded from the so called politicians that or justice system be cleaned up? Some of them so called lawyers are the same sycophants who have benefited from the corrupt system. We always looking for a ‘savior’ to save us from our nasty ways, but we like um so. Stupse, and we are to believe that one man is supposed to be the knight in shining armor and correct the wrongs in a system that has bred and continues to breed some of the nastiest vermin? Oh please.

    We got lawyers tiefing people hard earned money, getting fat and sending way them children to learn, while poor bajans are viciously shafted. We got magistrates and judges, some who don’t even know the law, or even the basic fact that the Constitution is the highest law of the land, not some random act or statute, oh the insanity. How can we get people to do their jobs properly when they don’t even understand their jobs in the first place. What else can we expect from a highly politicized Judiciary?

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  • @David. Excellent article. You have exposed certain court and registry practices that many do not realise.

    @Hants. I have pointed out two solutions to the backlog in the past. The first one is that queens counsel are considered to be deputy judges AND we have a number of retired judges, any of whom can be co-opted to hear cases and render decisions. IF there is a question of space, which I don’t think there is, a court can be convened (especially in civil cases heard on affidavit evidence that are usually heard in chambers in any case) anywhere. The second one would be more expensive and would require identifying commonwealth counsel/retired judges and bringing them in specifically to hear cases within their individual specialties.

    The problem arises then, once the backlog is cleared up, in what do you do with the existing sitting judges that are responsible for the backlog in the first place? Once all the help that cleared it is gone, do you allow these judges to create a whole fresh backlog? For me, this is a culture of thought that has to be addressed and eradicated. Otherwise, all you are doing is removing the love vine without killing the roots. I do admit that there are maybe two good acting judges, but the rest….. I also deplore this habit of thinking that because they teach law, that teachers/professors should be appointed judges – they make lousy judges. To be a judge, one must have a wide practice experience that is NOT gained spending one’s time lecturing on theories. Remember the very true adage – “Those who can do, while those who can’t teach.”

    The problem with the Registry is also a matter of culture of thought and it springs from a politician-like arrogance that, unfortunately, appears to have affected all branches of the uncivil service, whereby they see the taxpayer as the servant, rather than as the paymaster. So it may be time for those elected (by the taxpayer) public officers to actually fire some of the less satisfactory of these.

    Finally, there is the Bar Association with the president of which (along with the CJ) the AG has told the House that he held what he seems to think was a highly progressive meeting – WHICH HAS PRODUCED NOTHING!! The whole relevance and function of the BA needs to be re-evaluated, along with its practices and abundant failings and members need to come together to get rid of its executive and replace them with serious counsel with serious practices and experience, instead of those who are looking for advancement, professional and political, through their executive positions. The whole system of complaints and the disciplinary process also needs to radically overhauled, in order to restore public confidence, which means, once again, co-opting retired judges.

    It is not that difficult a fix. All it requires is something that appears to be lacking in Barbados. POLITICAL COURAGE!! And the PM is right. The buck DOES stop with him. Constitutionally, he is the ONLY person who has the power to make the necessary changes.

    Also, @Hants, I agree with Gabriel. Canada was never one of the countries listed to be in recession.

    @Ross. I agree with what you impute, but stay, deliberately, short of saying. Time for Marston Gibson to go. And yes, most of the justice system HAS completely lost confidence in him.

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  • @David. I was just handed today’s Nation. I see that the Bar Association has issued a statement on the delays – and the Nation has actually carried the story. Interesting that it is only now that the cat is well out of the bag and the situation catastrophic that we see anyone stepping up to the plate that BU identified years ago. The similarity to Nero fiddling while Rome burned, is most apt.

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  • These men have no say in what goes on in barbados they are all helpless under the thumb of the economic hit men.BARBADOS IS OWNED BY FOREIGN COMPANIES AND BILLIONAIRES.
    http://barbadostripadvisor.wordpress.com/2014/01/19/china-taking-over-from-the-inside-out/

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  • on this subject ,! have you ever seen JUSTICE IN BARBADOS???????
    IF YOU HAVE LET ME KNOW PLEASE.
    THERE IS NO JUSTICE LEFT IN THIS WORLD AT ALL ,AND IF THERE IS IT IS VERY LITTLE.!! no need to say anymore. it is what it is.!
    who is going to change it as you bajans blissfully go about your day doing as little work as possible . well are these men not Barbadians also????????
    ”the least work i can do for the most money i can get ” IS THE BAJAN WAY
    what happen why the hurry????we does only hurry when we driving we car
    and, then not so much.we are African do not forget.all know how they are by now.!!!!!!!!!!!!! man i will call you later i got a meeting with my TV set at home and my couch.and my outside women.wat rong wit you?u is a Russian?useless twits i would not sweep my kitchen steps.lol

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  • @bk

    We all have roles, BU we highlight. Others can run with it including you.

    @Amused

    We have to keep on chipping away.

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  • … so ….. have the QC’s who refused to pay VAT up to last year paid their dues for the New Year as yet?

    Do they have practicing certificates?

    Will the Registrar publish a list of lawyers to whom a practicing certificate has been issued?

    Will the QC’s threaten to sue the Registrar for doing her job?

    Will the soap opera continue once more this year?

    …… and ….. what about Naomi?

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  • Talking about tales from the court and one that will likely end up before the CCJ if the medical officials and government of the day (DLP), does not stop fcking around.

    As it now stands and this is all factual, the DLP government of the day CANNOT AFFORD to pay pharmacists or drug suppliers on the island for their drugs and owe these entities to the tune of millions, this has been going on for some years during the DLPs tenure, they cannot afford to keep polyclinics and QEH consistently stocked with life-saving medicine and/or equipment which impacts the quality of life of the very old, the very young and everyone else in-between on the island BUT CAN AFFORD, in their own words”to purchase VERY EXPENSIVE HPV VIRUS VACCINE for your young girls and eventually young boys on the island, which other countries would be glad to do but cannot afford”. The DLP CANNOT AFFORD to pay public worker’s salaries, remember pending layoffs to the tune of 3,500-6,000-9,000?, the economy is in dire straits and up the wazoo in debt that they are unable to pay……

    Fine……since the government cannot themselves figure out if they are at junk bond status, rich, poor or in very heavy debt that they are AGAIN unable to pay, maybe the citizens of Barbados should start, WITHOUT ANY FEAR OF RETALIATION to ask the government some very serious questions.

    So….why am i sensing a desperation in the medical officials in trying to FORCE parents of the very young and vulnerable, not to mention UNDERAGE 11-14 year olds on the island to be injected with a vaccine that has been in question for some time, not last year or year before, but a very long time by the same doctors who created the vaccine and without the parents in Barbados having the time to contact the FDA (FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION) in the US to query whether this vaccine is being investigated and may be withdrawn years in the future because of the growing concern and potential to cause disability, sickness, death and destruction on young lives in Barbados/Caribbean…..to hell with Elizabeth Ferdinand and the “putting off causing problems’ story she is now putting out using 3 black health sisters from the polyclinics as props, time for parents to have their concerns for their children’s health addressed, and not by these lying pimps in Barbados…….

    David…..this is in two parts, cause I believe it is way too important to take lightly.

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  • Now………..Principal of Alexandra School Orson ‘the jackass’ Alleyne is suggesting mandatory injecting these vulnerable AND UNDERAGE children, if Alleyne had done his homework he would not have to query “if the vaccine was so important”. He would KNOW you CANNOT take away the rights of parents to make informed decisions about the future health of their children. These decisions are not to be DICTATED by or left to slimy politicians or health officials…….slimy and slimmier.

    Barbados is NOT A DICTATORSHIP and parents should NOT be dictated to as it pertains to their children’s health…Ferdinand is threatening (very subtly) “if and when it ever become necessary for it to be mandatory, she (they) will advise government to make that decision”…..

    Well let me tell Ferdinand……….i have a very close friend living in North America with two grandchildren in Barbados and she has already PROMISED that if any doctor, nurse, school official, Ferdinand. medical official or politician from either DLP/BLP so much as approaches her grandchildren with any needles filled with that vaccine or any drug AND WITHOUT parental consent, the CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT that will be triggered against all the above as FIRST DEFENDANTS will guh down, guh down in the ANNALS OF BARBADOS’ LEGAL HISTORY for centuries to come, well being my usual charming self, i advised, yes advised her to not even consider using a Bajan attorney since it not even any longer and open secret that most of the attorneys in Barbados are in someone’s pocket, everyone is talking and taking about it, and would sell their Mommas or in this case their vulnerable sons and daughters for the almighty dollar, gotta drive that Mercedes.

    I am saying all of that………..to say this….the noise about HPV Vaccine started with Inniss as Minister of Health, well knowing (also factual) of his very close alliance with Harris and his family who have now monopolized the healthcare system in Barbados (I wonder if Alleyne of Alexandra school is also a member of the Combermere (lodge) General Insurance Company….We are all left to wonder where the DLP government acquired the millions of dollars necessary to purchase these doses of HPV vaccine that stretch over a period of years for the intended victim (after all, we all know, except the DLP, that the DLP government is broke, no one can argue this with me….Did they contract with US big pharma to use the children on the island as the latest guinea pigs?, they contracted with someone for sure to acquire this vaccine, personally, i doubt that big pharma US would even say hello to those slimy little ass wipes on the island who call themselves politicians and millionaire, they are small fry, too small for greedy big Pharma in the US, so there must be a middleman hiding under some rock somewhere. Big Pharma US, when there is a potential to earn BILLIONS OF DOLLARS, there is none greedier, we who live in the US know the drill, death, destruction and injury be damned, big pharma will be out a class action lawsuit to the tune of billions in North America ONLY., but potential victims in the Caribbean and Africa have no such recourse, particularly with dishonest politicians, lawyers, doctors and medical officials.

    So where did the millions come from to purchase this vaccine, who financed the DLP purchase? Whose idea was it?…AND who in the DLP took BRIBES to facilitate the purchase and acquire the vaccine??….I just want these politicians to consider this, not everyone is afraid of either the DLP/BLP particularly when the safety and health of their blood relatives are concerned, so it is time these politicians haul and pull their asses up, or suffer the consequences.

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  • If the GOB owes a business monies I feel there should be some mechanism whereby that business can offset VAT and Income Tax it owes at the end of the relevent periods.

    I don’t feel the GOB should be forcing businesses to lend it money in these hard economic times … or for that matter at any time.

    It is a kind of extortion.

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  • On the numbered point one above, isn’t it actually the case that, in broad terms, the old system was for the machinery to be sorted by individuals through private agreements (attorneys and judges and all very Victorian) whereas the changes were intended to create a centralized system where everyone is open to scrutiny. As for hearings, the date is determined by the judge’s clerk (yes, Registry) but in consultation with both attorney and judge. Of course, that system only works well if the clerk is competent – and not all have been found to be so. And of course, old ways are often the best – and so I’ll only read rather than also google and wait till I get back to the office to call rather than use my mobile. The massive increase in the volume of work over recent years also militates against an ad hoc one-to-one system.

    I think that a reasoned approach was for the post writer to explain why Simmons CJ orchestrated changes and then explore why the system is not working if that is the case. Anything less than that is either fifth form stuff or (with H Austin in mind) ‘mere journalism’.

    I am not clear what is being suggested about other countries. The idea, for example, that judges in the UK fix dates unilaterally themselves or with counsel and not through the Registrar’s Office is simply ludicrous.

    Amused

    Yes you got my sentiment right. But tell me – how do you say Messrs Burgess and Alleyne are falling short? (please don’t say the obvious again from the lofty heights of a ‘mere practitioner’ and note that I do not put the female judge in the same category as them).

    David

    Yes chip away but, on the issue of who does what, raised by bk, isn’t there an element of cynicism in making bullets for others to fire?

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  • From Nationnews.com Sun, January 19, 2014 – 12:08 AM

    THE LENGTHY DELAYS in the court system not only severely impact respect for the rule of law, but could also hamper “business economic activity both locally and in our vital offshore financial business sector”.

    BU bloggers have been saying this for years.

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  • millertheanunnaki

    @ Hants | January 19, 2014 at 10:00 AM |
    “THE LENGTHY DELAYS in the court system not only severely impact respect for the rule of law, but could also hamper “business economic activity both locally and in our vital offshore financial business sector”.

    What about the length of time spent on remand (some as much as four years) before accused persons have to wait to get a fair hearing and justice meted out?
    Why are these people so flagrantly denied their rights under the Constitution? How can you find a person guilty of breaking any law when that person’s rights have been violated and the highest law in the Land broken with impunity?

    Barbados is fast becoming a banana republic as its legal and justice systems (very important planks to an orderly society and political democracy) inherited from its colonial masters crumble before your very eyes.

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  • @Hants. Thanks for that. Interesting, but does not persuade me in a global sense. While the recession may certainly have affected Canadian businesses in relation to exports, the measures adopted long-term by the Canadian banking industry under the leadership of the Bank of Canada, blunted to a very large extent the privations felt in other countries. I note that Mark Carney, the Bank of Canada’s governor, has since been teefed by the Bank of England.

    @Ross. We will simply have to disagree on the generality of law lecturers/professors being competent judges and, unlike you, I have serious reservations about the two you identified. I have no information on the one case cited in this article, but, like you, will take a moment when I get to the office tomorrow to check it out, though I do not undertake to report back. It will not surprise me, however, to discover that BU’s information is accurate. For the rest of it, I confirm that the information IS accurate and I share and endorse the views expressed by BU. If I recall accurately, in the past you have sought to cast doubt on the breakdown of the justice system or minimize it, its dire effect on our foreign business and David’s highlighting of it. I agree with the intent of your comments on that other blog on the subject of the CCJ and you might have gone much further – maybe you should consider going further.

    @John. Diversionary tactics from the central issue will not serve.

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  • Amused

    I did not say Messrs Burgess and Alleyne are not falling short. I simply have no evidence that they are, which is why I asked you for yours since you said they were.

    I am not sure which “other blog” you mean. IF you mean the BFP blog then, yes, I didn’t take it too far since I didn’t want to waste my time if there was no-one there to listen. The comments subsequent to mine convince me that that was the right approach. I set out, I thought, the essence of it.

    On ‘casting doubt’ – I would hope that my intent and method is sufficiently clear – but it is summarized in the first two paragraphs of my previous post particularly the second.

    Miller

    On remand prisoners – couldn’t agree with you more and, indeed, am on public record (apart from BU) as saying so.

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  • A

    @John. Diversionary tactics from the central issue will not serve.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    My two comments about VAT are very relevant to the central issue which as I understand it is the alleged sickness of the legal system in Barbados.

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  • St George's Dragon

    On a general note, it is sad to see that Barbados did with the courts what it normally does with a failing organisation – build it a grand new headquarters. I find it odd that somehow those in charge seem to think that a new building will solve the inadaquacies in the operation of the organisation, which of course it does not.
    So we see the grand new Supreme Court, the magnificent BWA edifice, the new proposed headquarters for the SSA and the BNOC also embarking on new premises.
    Why can the Politicians not see that it is organisational change that is required not buildings.

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  • It is very simple, the legal system is broken. Clean house!!! In a book called “The Death of Common Sense” ‘How Law is suffocating America…’ by Philip K. Howard a whole lot of truth about lawyer-ing was shared.:-) And lawyers, judges with fake documents….. How many are there opporating in your own court systems? U.K. have a lot in the Closed Family Courts…

    Law is suffocating the common sense of the whole globe. Stalling time getting nothing accomplished is I see its game. :-)) What is Litigation? Now Philip says, “Litigation is the insider game within the game of Law. ‘It is a world in which lawyers manipulate the detailed rules of procedure to harass the other side and delay for years any reckoning for their clients conduct…” Lawyers are like gatekeepers from getting any real work done and getting wealthier and wealthier as the time marches on. Stalling time means more money and getting little accomplished. Just build bigger prisons…. the new Slavery I see these prisons all over the globe.

    We know that the so called different political parties are really working for the same goal of globalization. Cannot believe how as an American I had no idea what the heck was going on around me until a U.K. Man was prophesied to me and came into my life Jan.9, 2009 when all my blinders began to be removed as he had to tell me about what my own country was up to and how I had been lied to all my life. A hard pill to swallow. But I listened without judgement and now understand the things you are sharing here.

    We must work together to bring truth of what is really going on behind the curtains. (The veil of secrecy must be lifted with transparency of all Nations actions) J.F. K. our USA 35th president warned we American’s but did anyone listen? Nope. Now we got ourselves in such a mess it seems almost impossible to have victory. BUT we shall OVERCOME as Martin Luther King Jr. said. The truth is being made self evident. Could it happen in the way the study was done in Japan in the 1950’s ‘experiment called ‘The 100th Monkey Effect’ where something I read about critical mass being reached that changes are made that can spread all over the globe? That is my understanding. So, if we spread and bring awareness to a certain mass will the idea take root and shift the consciousness of man?

    I love Barbados and now that I understand the manipulations being done to mankind the patterns appear the same in every country. The legal system in this all the way…. Threaten the leaders, if they do not do as commanded, replace them with a puppet master that will follow the global orders….The War War War-machine activated. Time to change all the Regimes that are not working for humanity. A good place to begin I think would be remove all the crooked lawyers and judges.:-) Just a humble opinion from a past-organized religious sheep. 🙂 God Bless America and Barbados.:-))) Nancy May Peace prevail.

    It is so sad reading all that

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  • The Judiciary is part of the reasons link to low/poor economic activity. like it or not that is the truth.

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  • People in this country have no integrity.

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  • @Nancy. Excellent post. Not entirely correct, in my humble opinion, but near enough the bone to discomfit..

    @Ross. I clearly misunderstood you. Apologies. Yes, I do have substantial grounds to have massive reservation about the two judges you identify. But I don’t want, for reasons you, as counsel will appreciate, to go into them at this time. But rest assured that I will at the right time. And yes, you correctly identify the blog I referred to. I also agree that we have to get rid of this waste of space that currently heads the judiciary and who, for my sins, I initially backed. The test of a real person is the ability to admit error and move to correct it. Now, let us see how many real people inhabit the executive. Curing the error will garner far more respect than being wrong and strong.

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  • No doubt David will recall that within three months of this CJ taking up the post Bushie tagged him as a joker – whose only aim is social ladder climbing.
    What is amazing is that these failures seem to have NO SHAME WHATSOEVER!!!
    Shiite then….this place like an alms house……a collection of piss poor incompetent mendicants parading on the national scene from top to bottom.
    Brass bowls

    Bushie moves that we elect ac to the position of CJ.
    Why the donkey not…?
    See seems to eat, breath and shit…..thereby meeting to only observable requirements for one of these big picks….

    …plus it would keep her tail off BU 🙂

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  • Sunshine Sunny Shine

    There is nothing wrong with our justice system. If you do not believe ask the elites of this island. They will tell you it works perfectly

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  • Amused

    Glad to hear you’re a real person! lol

    I have to say that my views generally have also changed over months but mainly as a consequence of a case I was involved in in the UK. The conclusion I came to was that those parts of the system with which I dealt were totally corrupt, a view confirmed by a very experienced, black (unusually), senior clerk of chambers who in every respect was first rate. One jerk QC had the cheek to scoff at the profession here – the fellow was a total incompetent. You may understand, therefore, my reluctance to join those who make comparisons as between us and the UK which are unfavourable to us. I suppose I am saying that in every system there are flaws and I know – AS YOU DO – that in ours there are some people who are every bit as good, if not better, than their counterparts in the UK. And as for delay, well yes – but you find it everywhere, and the case with which I was involved was a case in point. And this is all why my approach has been consistently empirical rather than, as here on BU, sensationalist though it has won me no friends here. But who cares – when trusted friends turn out to be no friends at all but just so much eye and mouth-wash – well apart from you of course…err….lol

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  • Hants
    Thanks for the G&M opinion. I am of the view that there may be specific markets within Canada that would have been affected by the global downturn but generally the Financial and Housing key markets were no where near the examples obtained in the US,UK and EU markets.Housing in Ontario generally remained very compeitive.

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  • @ross. I feel your pain. I too have had the misfortune of dealing with some idiots masquerading as senior counsel in the UK. Also in Canada and the Excited States and I agree with you that our best are every bit as good as theirs. But the UK does hold itself to a far higher standard in its judges and support organisations. Also, the disciplinary system works far better than ours, if ours works at all, which I question. Canada too has mostly solid judges. Unfortunately, in the US, because of their system of politicizing the bench, it is a lottery. I’m afraid I have to disagree that BU has sensationalised our predicament. You must be suffering the same three D’s as most of us are. Disappointment, dismay and depression. Loyalty to one’s profession is admirable, but I do think that loyalty to the people of one’s country has to take precedence. And our justice system is causing untold damage to the country. So it is up committed younger people like you and your significant other to join in holding up your clothes and making nuff noise. Time for Marston to go. You say he says he cannot read. I say he may once have been able to, but has voluntarily lost the skill through lack of practice.

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  • Amused wrote “I agree with you that our best are every bit as good as theirs.”

    Not only in the legal profession but in almost every other profession Bajans are equal to their counterparts in Canada.

    The difference is that in Barbados we become more “relaxed”.

    I am a salaried employee yet I went to work yesterday and again this morning for four hours. In Barbados I would have gone to the beach.

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  • Perhaps the legal system needs modernization and management.

    You would be amazed how much time is saved by an efficient filing system.

    The courts should be using Scheduling software and systems should be in place to alert all involved of court dates.

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  • PLANTATION DEEDS FROM 1926TO 2013, MASSIVE FRAUD LANDTAX BILLS AND NO DEEDS, BARBADOS DLP/BLP MASSIVE PONZI FRAUD
  • Amused

    My remarks were directed to ALL sections with whom I came into contact – from the meanest to those “ever so high” if you get my drift – and also included the conduct of the police.

    I won’t argue the ‘sensationalist’ point so long as you understand what I am calling the empirical method – viz (1) identify the problem; (2) identify its cause; (3) determine ways to fix it and by whom. That means rejecting assumptions and prejudices and most definitely not drawing all-or-nothing conclusions from (1) alone.

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  • PLANTATION DEEDS FROM 1926TO 2013, MASSIVE FRAUD LANDTAX BILLS AND NO DEEDS, BARBADOS DLP/BLP MASSIVE PONZI FRAUD

    Hants | January 19, 2014 at 7:06 PM |@

    We agree with you words You get a vote, The members have their own undo speed in the court for their own fraud reasons,
    land lord and tenant and land sales, Remember the court have no land for sale , But sales seem to happen? or the words of buying from the courts is used on the out side.Court title are fraud titles and shall not stand when enforcement appears . No crimes goes un notice forever. All land have an OWNER, ALL LAND,

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  • “Time for Marston to go.”
    Just asking Amused, but is this the same ‘Marston’ of whom you spoke so highly in times so recently passed?

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  • @balance

    Why state the obvious?

    Don’t you believe humans make mistakes? If you read with understanding you would have discerned that Amused has admitted his mistake.

    Like

  • New funds needed for CCJ

    New funds needed for CCJ
    Mon, January 20, 2014 – 1:45 PM
    ST. JOHN’S – Caribbean countries are being asked to re-examine the US$100 million Trust Fund that had been established to fund the Trinidad-based Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ).

    The Fund had been established amid concerns that judges of the CCJ would be paid by governments which could exert decisive informal pressure on them to deliver judgments favourable to regional governments.
    The Caribbean Court of Justice Trust Fund is administered by a Board of Trustees drawn from regional entities and as a consequence, the CCJ is the only integration court of its kind financially independent of the largesse of governments and free from their administrative control.

    But now, Justice Ralston Nelson, one of the judges of the Port of Spain-based Court, said the time has come for a review of the US$100 million initiative given the changing global economic and financial environment.
    “I think when the sum of 100 million US dollars was arrived at, obviously the data they had considered would not have included the collapse of interest rates and the collapse of a large part of the financial world in 2008.
    “So that any calculations you would have made prior to setting up that fund now have to be revised anyway so that there is that aspect of it…and I think truth to tell is that the operations of the court were not fully looked at,” Justice Nelson told the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC).

    He said “the whole question of the cost of having a Commission was never seriously looked at and those costs are real costs.
    “If you were to revive now those figures in light of what you now know you will find that we do require a new injection, that’s my personal view. It may not be a painful injection in the sense that in the same way the CDB (Caribbean Development Bank) borrowed 100 million and allocated portions of each state and backed by a sovereign government, the same way that could be done,” he said.

    Justice Nelson said that the US$100 million borrowed in 2008 has not almost been paid up “so that if there was a continuation of the loan with new funds, I don’t think it would put the governments under any additional pressure”.
    The CCJ, established in 2001 to replace the London-based Privy Council, also acts as an international tribunal interpreting the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas that governs the regional integration movement.
    The CCJ also has original and appellate jurisdictions and while most of the Caribbean countries have signed on to the original jurisdiction, only Barbados, Guyana and Belize are signatories to the appellate jurisdiction. (

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  • “David | January 20, 2014 at 6:40 AM |

    @balance

    Why state the obvious?

    Don’t you believe humans make mistakes? If you read with understanding you would have discerned that Amused has admitted his mistake.”
    Grateful for your response

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  • CCJ will get another member in the form of Dominica. (LOL) Justice R. Nelson should feel good.

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  • PLANTATION DEEDS FROM 1926TO 2013, MASSIVE FRAUD LANDTAX BILLS AND NO DEEDS, BARBADOS DLP/BLP MASSIVE PONZI FRAUD

    We see 4 crooks on the head of this POST all 4 not wearing a hat. We will have to wait and see what the Mad hatter will do ,
    The CJ will have to wait for cases to come to him , The crook ass lawyer will not let the cases reach him

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  • CJ SAYS SORRY
    By Maria Bradshaw mariabradshaw @nationnews.com
    O utgoing Chief Justice Sir Marston Gibson has apologised to the parties involved in one of the oldest cases on the judicial calendar and taken responsibility for the lengthy delay in the delivery of the judgment.
    The matter involved the civil appeal of Marjorie Knox and 11 respondents, including Eric Deane and other members of the Deane family as well as Kingsland Estates Ltd; Classic Investments Ltd, and attorney at law, Philip Nicholls.
    The matter was first heard in the High Court in 1998 and filed in the Court of Appeal in 2010 but not heard until six years later before Court of Appeal judges, consisting of Sir Marston, and former Court of Appeal judges Sandra Mason (now Governor General Dame Sandra Mason), and Andrew Burgess, who now sits on the Caribbean Court of Justice. At that time, the court heard the case on February 16; May 11 and 25; and July 4, 2016.
    On June 26, 2020, Sir Marston delivered his written judgement, four years after the appeal was heard.
    He wrote on the judgment: “I sincerely apologise for the length of time it has taken to deliver this judgement for which I am entirely responsible.”
    Dame Sandra Mason and Justice Burgess each wrote: “I concur”.
    Knox, now deceased, filed the appeal against the order of the High Court to garnish the dividends of the appellant for the financial year 2009/2010.
    Deceased
    Attorney at law Clyde Turney QC, who represented two of the respondents, is also deceased.
    Of the case, Sir Marston noted that it had “a long sordid history, described by this court in a prior journey of this very appeal, No. 6 of 2010, as “the saga of the Knox v Deane litigation which runs way back to the 1980s,” a long-running internecine, intra-family battle between the Knox-Deane family over the Kingsland Estate and control of Kingsland Estates Limited (“KEL”).
    Giving the history of the case, he explained that on September 13, 2010, after her application seeking leave to appeal was granted by the court, Knox filed an appeal against the order of the trial judge. On February 4, 2013, she also filed an Application dated January 30, 2013, for leave to amend the Notice of Appeal and adduce additional evidence in the form of an affidavit by John Knox.
    He added: “In a judgement dated 19 June 2015, this Court granted Mrs. Knox leave to amend the Notice of Appeal but dismissed the application to adduce additional evidence. On 14 July 2015 an Amended Notice of Appeal was filed. On 16 February 2016, the matter came on for case management (CMC) before me since it had become clear that there were several pending proceedings and at least one appeal, this current one, which remained outstanding.”
    In the instant appeal, the court stated: “The appeal against the garnishee order is dismissed. The appeal against the rate of interest is allowed.”
    The attorneys involved included Alair Shepherd QC and Philip McWatt for
    the appellant; Leslie Haynes QC for the ninth respondent; Clyde Turney QC and Doria Moore for the second and tenth respondent.
    Sir Marston goes on pre-retirement leave on August 31.

    Like

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