President Appointment Goes to Trial, ECSC Rules
The Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) has denied an application by lawyers of the Roosevelt Skerrit administration in matter of the election of the President of Dominica.
On February 22, 2013 Justice Lionel Jones ruled that the challenge by the Opposition United Workers Party (UWP), objecting to the process by which President Eliud Williams was elected should go to trial.
The UWP took the matter to court arguing that the nomination and election of President Williams were "unconstitutional, null, void and of no lawful effect" mainly because the leader of the opposition was not properly consulted and other conditions of the Constitution were not met.
In his ruling, Justice Jones stated that after analyzing the matter he accepts that as leader of the opposition, Hector John has a significant role to play in the process of the election of a president.
"I hold that his locus standi is indisputable," he wrote. "I hold that the Court has jurisdiction and the claim in not frivolous, vexatious nor an abuse of the process of the court".
But the lawyers for the government appealed the judge's ruling. But in an Order, Justice of Appeal, Davidson Baptiste, on May 21, 2013 stated that he noted the Order of Pereira CJ dated May 3, 2013 and "that no submissions were filed in accordance with the said Order."
"Upon the Court being of the opinion that the appellants have not satisfied the requirement for the grant of a stay, it is hereby ordered that the application for the stay of execution of the directions of the Judge dated February 22, 2013 is refused," he wrote.
He made no order to cost.