More Court of Appeal Judges as Gov’t moves to amend restrictive laws


With a high caseload being sent to the Court of Appeal and a small complement of judges to dispose of matters in a timely manner, the government intends to amend the law to increase the number of serving Appeal Court Justices.

This is according to Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Anil Nandlall, S.C., who spoke with reporters at the Demerara High Court on Wednesday.

“The government is proposing, after consulting with the judiciary and the legal profession, to amend the law to increase the complement of judges in the Court of Appeal,” Nandlall said.

According to Section 35 (1) of the Court of Appeal Act, the judges of the Court of Appeal shall include not less than two and not more than five Justices of Appeal.

Attorney General Anil Nandlall

“That obviously is inadequate having regard to the case load that is leaving the High Court towards the Court of Appeal for ventilation,” Nandlall said

The government is hoping to change the law to not less than five and not more than nine judges and is hoping that during consultations, stakeholders will find agreement on the proposal.

Additionally, the government is also proposing to make the Court of Appeal itinerant which will allow the Appeal Court Justices to sit in different counties to hear appeals in those counties.

The government will also work with the judiciary to resource the necessary staff needed to support the court.

“You can’t only appoint judicial officers and don’t give them the necessary resources and personnel backup for them to discharge their services, it’s an all-encompassing exercise,” Nandlall said.

He noted that these moves are in line with the government’s ideology that the administration of justice is an important factor in the democratic, economic and social equation of the country.

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