Case for compelling Cabinet to resign comes up next Monday

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Following a High Court application filed by former Attorney General Anil Nandlall for an order compelling the Cabinet, including the President to resign, the matter is expected to come up before Chief Justice (ag) Roxane George-Wiltshire on September 9.

On August 26, 2019, Nandlall filed a Fixed Date Application (FDA) at the High Court and the Attorney General (AG) and Minister of Legal Affairs, Basil Williams SC was listed as the respondent in the matter.

Nandlall is seeking a mandatory order compelling the Cabinet, including the President to give effect to the resignation of the Cabinet, including the President, which occurred by operation of law, upon the passage of the motion of No-Confidence on December 21, in accordance with and pursuant to Article 106(6) of the Constitution.

The former AG argues that to date the Cabinet, inclusive of the President, has failed, and or neglected, and or omitted, to resign.

Anil Nandlall

He noted that during the month of January 2019, multiple legal challenges were launched against the validity, legality and constitutionality of the said No-Confidence Motion and the ruling was made by Chief Justice (ag) Roxane George-Wiltshire on January 31.

Nandlall quoted the Chief Justice when she ruled that “the resignation under Article 106(6) takes immediate effect following the defeat of the Government on a vote of confidence by a majority of all the elected members of the National Assembly.

“In this case, Cabinet must be taken to have resigned with effect from the evening of 21 December 2018, and all functions or duties provided in any law to be performed specifically by the Cabinet must have ceased from that time.”

The cases were appealed and in the final judgement given by the Caribbean Court of Justice, Nandlall noted that the Court ruled that the motion was properly passed and that “upon the passage of this motion of no confidence in the Government, the clear provisions of Article 106 immediately became engaged”.

Given that Cabinet has not resigned, it is Nandlall’s argument that the government is in breach of the constitution and the Court “has an inherent jurisdiction and a constitutional duty to grant appropriate remedies whenever the Constitution is likely to be contravened, is being contravened, or has been contravened.”

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