SG reiterates call for Member States to make CCJ their Final Court
Secretary-General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Ambassador Irwin LaRocque has once again called for the Member States to make the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) the final court of Appeal for the Region.
Speaking to the Full Court at a Special Sitting in honour of the Honourable Mme Justice Desiree Bernard who is retiring from the CCJ, the Secretary-General said that no better tribute could be paid to Mme Justice Bernard than for all the Member States of CARICOM to accede to the Court in both its Original and Appellate Jurisdictions.
Ambassador LaRocque told the Court sitting at the Guyana International Conference Centre just outside Georgetown, that the CCJ had proved its worth. “There can be no doubt of the Court’s ability to render well thought out and reasoned judgements that can stand the scrutiny of its most ardent detractors,” he added.
“The CCJ is an integral edifice in the regional architecture as designed within the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas. But arguably, even more important, the Court in both its jurisdictions represents the essence of our independence and sovereignty and is essential to the progress of the integration movement, the Secretary-General said.
He lauded Mme Justice Bernard for her intellectual depth which he said, reflected the strength of the judicial competence of the Caribbean Court of Justice. He noted that she had received the CARICOM Triennial Award for Women, for her work which “had enriched the legal and social fabric of the Community.”
Ambassador La Rocque was one of several speakers at the Special Sitting presided over by the President of the CCJ, the Right Honourable Sir Dennis Byron who was assisted by the full complement of Judges of the Court. Mme Justice Bernard is one of the inaugural judges of the CCJ and its first and only female member thus far.