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Holness says CCJ pursuit is chasing failed dreams of past generations

Published:Thursday | May 14, 2015 | 6:01 PM
Holness ... Jamaica is in such a precarious economic and social situation that all efforts should be focused on the priority issues.

Opposition Leader, Andrew Holness has suggested that those seeking to make the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) Jamaica’s final court are wasting political energy on the failed dreams of past generations.

In a letter to the media today, parts of which were also posted on his Facebook page, Holness said he is a nationalist first and does not believe in chasing after a fleeting and elusive dream called integration.

The Opposition Leader insisted that the question of adopting the appellate jurisdiction of the CCJ must be put to Jamaicans.

On Tuesday the Government used its majority in the Lower House to pass three Bills aimed at ending Jamaica’s relationship with the London-based Privy Council and establishing the CCJ as Jamaica's final court.

The Senate is to vote on the Bills in another three weeks and that’s where the Opposition is hoping the Government will be defeated.

The Government will need at least one Opposition Senator to support the Bills for them to be passed.

In his letter today, Holness insisted that the Jamaican people spoke on this matter 54 years ago and decided against sharing the country's sovereignty in any Federal arrangement.

But he says some have not got over this decision and want to use what he says is their control and influence in the media to push a covert agenda of integration.

According to Holness, Jamaica is in such a precarious economic and social situation that all efforts should be focused on the priority issues, instead of what he says is the wasting of political energy on the resurrection of failed dreams of generations past.

But Holness says if the CCJ matter is believed to be so important then it must be put to the people for a decision.

According to Holness, he has long proposed that a Grand Referendum be held to decide issues which can fundamentally change the legal and political foundation and definition of society.

He says such a referendum could address the CCJ and other issues, such as the promise by Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller to review the Buggery Act.