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

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.



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.



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…)

Belize Court of Appeal President visits CCJ

The Honourable Sir Manuel Sosa, President of the Court of Appeal of Belize and former Chief Justice of Belize, visited Port-of-Spain, Trinidad and Tobago 23-26 February 2015, as a guest of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ).

The visit was as a result of an invitation extended by the President of the CCJ, the Right Honourable Sir Dennis Byron, in order to facilitate the efforts by the Belizean Court of Appeal to improve the administration of justice.

Earlier in the week, at the CCJ, President Sosa was involved in various activities including discussions with the CCJ President and Judges and a courtesy call on the Chief Justice of Trinidad and Tobago, the Honourable Mr. Justice Ivor Archie.

As a highlight of the visit, with the assistance of the Faculty of Law of the University of the West Indies St Augustine Campus, Sir Manuel Sosa made a presentation to law students on the topic: On Board with the CCJ: An Overview of the Belizean Experience thus far.

The visit of Sir Manuel Sosa also included a visit to the Hugh Wooding Law School where he met with the Principal, Ms. Miriam Samaru, and received a guided tour of the facilities. (CCJ Press Release)