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Holness lawyers want original Senate ruling overturned

Published:Monday | March 16, 2015 | 3:46 PMBarbara Gayle Justice Coordinator
Andrew Holness

The lawyer representing Andrew Holness in his Senate appeal case says the court should overturn a ruling that the Opposition Leader breached the constitution as the wrong procedure was used to bring the original matter to court.

Queen’s Counsel Ransford Braham made the submission as an appeal hearing of the February 6 Constitutional Court ruling started this morning.

The Constitutional Court’s ruled that Holness was wrong when he used undated, pre-signed resignation letters to remove Dr Christopher Tufton and Arthur Williams from the Senate in November 2013.

It was a victory for Williams who had taken the matter to court after he was ousted from the Senate following a leadership race in the Jamaica Labour party.

However, in his opening arguments this morning, Braham said Williams’ case was brought by a fixed date claim form instead of a petition.

According to him, the “issues canvassed before the Constitutional Court were done in a manner contrary to the provisions of the Constitution.”

He asked the Appeals Court to look at Section 44 of the Constitution which deals with persons invalidly elected or appointed to the Houses of Parliament.

He said any challenge of that section must be brought to court by way of a petition under the Parliament Members’ Question Act.
He is continuing his submissions.

Meanwhile, attorney-at-law Abe Daboub has not been named as part of the Holness’ legal team.

Along with Braham, Holness is being represented by Georgia Gibson Henlin and Taneisha Rowe-Coke.

Williams is being represented by Wentworth Charles and Lloyd Barnett are representing Williams. Tufton is in court.

The Constitutional Court has ruled that the actions of Holness were unlawful, contrary to public policy and in breach of the Constitution.