Sat | Dec 10, 2016

CCJ debate a distraction, says Holness

Published:Tuesday | January 20, 2015 | 6:11 PM
Andrew Holness - File

Debbie-Ann Wright, News Editor - Radio



KINGSTON, Jamaica:

Opposition leader, Andrew Holness, has labelled as a distraction the Government's attempts to get support to make the Caribbean Court of Justice Jamaica's final court.




He was speaking this afternoon as the debate continued on three bills in the House of Representatives which could see Jamaica moving away from the Privy Council and accepting the CCJ's appellate jurisdiction.



While making his contribution to the debate, Holness said Jamaicans are more concerned about meeting their daily expenses than about making the CCJ their final court.



Holness said there was no merit in the argument that moving away from the Privy Council would be a way in which Jamaica can assert its political independence.



According to Holness the Government should instead focus on achieving economic independence if it is seeking respect internationally.



Holness said the opposition would not support the three bills, instead arguing that Jamaica should be seeking to establish its own final court here.



However, responding to the opposition leader, Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller said the Opposition has been inconsistent over the years in its position on the CCJ.



According to Simpson Miller, it was not until recently that the opposition began mooting the idea of a local final court.



Simpson Miller says legislators now have three months to make a decision on whether to support the bills and must do the right thing.



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