CCJ modernises rules for its Original and Appellate Jurisdictions

The President of Caribbean Court of Justice, the Right Honourable Sir Dennis Byron (seated), signs the revised rules governing the Original Jurisdiction.  The signing took place on 21 April 2017 at an event held by the Court in celebration of its 12th anniversary.  The CCJ’s Registrar and Marshal, Mrs. Jacqueline Graham, who was a part of the review committee, watches as the document is authorised.
The President of Caribbean Court of Justice, the Right Honourable Sir Dennis Byron (seated), signs the revised rules governing the Original Jurisdiction. The signing took place on 21 April 2017 at an event held by the Court in celebration of its 12th anniversary. The CCJ’s Registrar and Marshal, Mrs. Jacqueline Graham, who was a part of the review committee, watches as the document is authorised.

After a comprehensive review of its rules of court, the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) announces the publication of its Original Jurisdiction and the Appellate Jurisdiction Rules 2017. In 2014, the CCJ adopted the standard for the revision of its rules of court every two years. The revised rules, which are now on the Court’s website, were amendments to its previous publishing in 2015.

The President of CCJ, the Right Honourable Sir Dennis Byron, highlighted the need for periodic reviews of Court practices; “The CCJ recognises that is important to evaluate our procedures for efficiency and make sure that they are documented on a regular basis in order to continue to deliver fair and accessible justice. This rules revision exercise was particularly important as the Rules now accommodate recent changes to our internal processes, principally the adoption of e-Filing”.

The Court’s latest introduction of e-Filing allows persons to file a matter with the Court at their convenience and offers a structured way to make submissions by guiding the user through various required fields of information. In January 2017, the CCJ began using the Curia court management system which, in addition to electronic filing, has a performance management module and one for case management. (more…)

CCJ debuts Electronic Court Management System

CCJ Headquarters, Trinidad and Tobago
CCJ Headquarters, Trinidad and Tobago

CCJ, Port of Spain – President of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ), the Right Honourable Sir Dennis Byron, has been a fervent advocate for greater use of technology within regional judiciaries. In January 2017, this drive was enhanced by the implementation of a bespoke electronic court management software suite called Curia which includes an electronic filing platform, also referred to as e-Filing. The court issued a practice direction which took effect on 10 January when the Court term opened for 2017.

“Technological solutions will enable the CCJ, and courts in the region, to be more efficient and responsive. At the CCJ this process started some time ago when it introduced filing by email in 2013. The transition to e-Filing, which the new court management software facilitates, is a logical progression that allows litigants to file documents online and therefore enhances access to the Court and ultimately enables greater access to justice.” the CCJ President said. Sir Dennis noted that, since inception, technology has been successfully integrated into the operations of the CCJ.

The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ)
The CCJ was inaugurated on 16 April, 2005 in Trinidad and Tobago where it is headquartered. Its central role is providing legal certainty to the operations of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME). It is structured to have two jurisdictions – an original and an appellate. In its original jurisdiction it ensures uniform interpretation and application of the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas, thereby underpinning and advancing the CARICOM Single Market and Economy. As the final court of appeal for Member States of the Caribbean Community it fosters the development of an indigenous Caribbean jurisprudence
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Take advantage of CSME – CARICOM Secretariat Economic Adviser tells businesses

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Regional private sector organisations should take advantage of the free movement of factors of production that the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) allows in order to achieve production efficiency and competitiveness.

This was the view of Ms. Desiree Field-Ridley, Adviser, Single Market and Sectoral Programmes, Directorate for Trade and Economic Integration of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat.

In an interview that focussed on maximising opportunities within the CSME, she pointed out that the CSME was intended to provide “access to total Region’s resources rather than just access to a country’s resource”.

“The intention is that it would enable producers to be more competitive because you now have a larger market not only for skills, but also for sourcing inputs for raw materials and intermediate goods,” she added.

Guyana, in particular, she noted, had the potential to be “a vital source of supply” in CARICOM, owing to its resource-rich characteristics. That potential is yet not fully tapped, she added.

“Guyana has its own abundant resources; it is a regional position that it has been not fully exploited, not only for its own benefit, but for the benefit of the entire Region.

“We just have to be able to exploit that potential. We know that there have been initiatives to attract the rest of the Region. Perhaps one needs now to look at what is needed to complement those offers and make them more attractive,” she reasoned.

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AG re-affirms commitment towards CCJ

Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, The Hon. Steadrroy Benjamin
Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, The Hon. Steadrroy Benjamin

ST. JOHN’S, Antigua, Feb 8, CMC – Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Steadroy Benjamin, has made a strong case for Antigua and Barbuda to accede to the appellate jurisdiction of the Trinidad-based Caribbean Court of Appeal (CCJ).

Benjamin said the government was of the view that it was time to ‘become members of the CCJ’ in all of its jurisdictions.

“Our Region must understand what being a Caribbean national is all about; we must have our own economy, we must have freedom of movement and be able to go to each other’s country and be productive and we must have a system therefore where our own legal system is developed,” he said.

The CCJ was established in 2001 to replace the London-based Privy Council and while most of the Caribbean countries have signed on to the court’s original jurisdiction, only Barbados, Guyana, Belize and Dominica, are signatories to the appellate jurisdiction of the CCJ that also serves as an international tribunal interpreting the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas that governs the 15-member regional integration movement.

Antigua and Barbuda is scheduled to hold a referendum later this year on whether to replace the London-based Privy Council, the island’s highest court, with the CCJ.

Via CMC

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Saint Lucia to table legislation to make CCJ final court

Prime Minster of Saint Lucia, Dr. the Hon. Kenny Anthony
Prime Minster of Saint Lucia, Dr. the Hon. Kenny Anthony

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – The St. Lucia government says it will soon table legislation that will allow for the island to make the Trinidad-based Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) its final court, replacing the London-based Privy Council.

Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony said that St. Lucia has a provision in its Constitution that is identical to a provision of the Constitution of Dominica, which used that measure to join the CCJ that was inaugurated in 2005.

‘St. Lucia has an identical provision but it makes reference to a section in the constitution which we believed was wrong. In other words there is an error in the section.” (more…)