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Better bet on Privy Council

Published:Wednesday | October 17, 2012 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Belize's Prime Minister Dean Barrow has made another call for the Caribbean Court of Justice to be fully adopted as the final appellate court by all CARICOM countries.

It was not so long ago that Jamaican attorney, Hugh Wildman, took some flak for stating that he believed that judgments coming from the Judicial Committee of Privy Council were far superior to those issued in the Caribbean.

Whether we like it or not, there is some truth to what Mr Wildman said; that is if we are to accept what was printed in The Sunday Gleaner dated September 23, 2012.

Queen's Counsel Walter Scott is reported to have said that a measure of the quality of the judgments of our Court of Appeal is whether a majority of the decisions are overturned by the Privy Council. Is Mr Scott suggesting as acceptable the Privy Council overturning just under 40 per cent - Scott cited 87 cases between 2001 and 2011 - of the cases brought to it by us?

Put another way, our local judges got it wrong 38.89 per cent of the time.

The thought that the chances of my getting justice in our local courts is less than two-thirds certain makes me very uncomfortable.

Just ask Mr Ezroy Millwood.

ROBERT MITCHELL

mitcib@yahoo.ca

Christiana PO, Manchester