The week: Keeping the Privy Council and who should win the election in Jamaica….

The Unforgiven

The Privy Council ruled that the Grenada 13 should be resentenced.

Then, just to prove that the Commonwealth Caribbean (the ex-colonies of Britain) need the Privy Council to protect us from the whims of our Governments, our legal systems and our own desire for revenge, the resentencing proceeded with water being thrown at the defendants, the judge refusing to recuse himself, the Grenadian government calling for the prisoners to be sent back to prison for life and the whole horrific issue of “where are the bodies ?” being raised again and being unresolved again.

The judge decided that three prisoners should go free and the others should go back to prison until 2010.

It seems impossible that people that lived through the 1983 murders, the invasion and the aftermath should be indifferent to the fate of Bernard Coard, Hudson Austin and the other prisoners. Threats are already being made against their lives, if and when they are freed.


“Maurice Bishop Speaks: The Grenada Revolution and Its Overthrow 1979-83” (Bruce Marcus, Michael Taber)


Meanwhile, down in Trinidad, the Privy Council ruled that
Chief Justice Sharma should face the courts after he was accused of telling the Chief Magistrate Sherman McNicholls to free former Prime Minister Basdeo Panday who was facing corruption charges for failing to declare a London bank account.

But once Sharma’s case came to court the Chief Magistrate refused to appear to repeat his accusations. Basdeo Panday had already been released on the grounds that his conviction on the corruption charges was unsafe. He now faces a retrial, but has gone back to the Privy Council for a ruling to prevent his retrial on the grounds that he is old and sick……..


“The Loss of El Dorado: A Colonial History” (V.S. Naipaul)


Just imagine if these matters, which appear to involve every aspect of race, revenge and Government interference in the judiciary, were matters for the Caribbean Court of Justice , instead of for the Privy Council……

How many Caribbean judges do not already have an opinion on what should happen to Bernard Coard et al ?

How many Caribbean judges would not be influenced by the race and reputation of Chief Justice Sharma, Basdeo Panday and Chief Justice McNicholls ?

The Privy Council is preferable as our final court of appeal simply because they have the very desirable perspective of being thousands of miles away and being able to consider matters of law as of matters of law.

If our politicians, judges and lawyers are so desperate to prove that they are “grown-up” and “independent”, they should perhaps offer to act as a final court of appeal for British defendants who have been convicted under terrorism legislation. The fear induced by the IRA bombings of mainland targets in the 1970’s rendered British judges incapable of acting fairly in the trials of the
Guildford Four, the Maguire Seven and the Birmingham Six, just as the Jamaican legal system, shocked by the ever increasing murder rate, was unable to act fairly in the case of convicted killers Pratt and Morgan , and the Grenadian courts were unable to see beyond the evil of 1983 …….


“In the Name of the Father” (Jim Sheridan)

Reader Poll !!!!!

Who do YOU want to win the Jamaican election ?

We’re promised the election will be announced soon (next few days)……

Mark Wignall has already called the election for the JLP…….

The innumerable polls suggest that the PNP has a slight lead………

Based on the polls, I guess I have to call it for the PNP……..

Do you have an opinion?

Please comment on the following:-

1. Who do you want to win ? Why ?

2. Who do you think will win ? Why ?

I’ll do a post next week with your comments………..



“The Road Less Traveled, 25th Anniversary Edition : A New Psychology of Love, Traditional Values and Spiritual Growth” (M. Scott Peck)

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