OPPOSITION LEADER Andrew Holness is to head to court to challenge the constitutionality of the NHT (Special Provisions) Act, which was passed in the Houses of Parliament last week.
Holness will file the action in his capacities as leader of the opposition and an NHT contributor.
The Central Executive of the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) yesterday mandated the party to file an action in the Constitutional Court seeking a declaration on the constitutionaliy of the newly passed NHT Act.
The Government brought the act to Parliament to bolster its position as it seeks to take $45.6 billion from the NHT over four years for budgetary support.
The decision by the JLP Central Executive was based on a motion moved by Dr Horace Chang, JLP spokesperson on housing, water and the environment.
The motion stated that "the Legal and Constitutional Committee of the Jamaica Labour Party questions the constitutionality of the act in that it seeks to breach property rights protected under the Constitution".
The JLP Central Executive indicated that it would not be applying for an injunction.
There has been much public outcry since the Government announced it would be calling on the NHT to provide $11.4 billion per annum for budgetary support over the next four years.
According to Holness: "The JLP holds true to its philosophy of being a responsible opposition. We believe that matters as fundamental as these - that is the property rights of Jamaicans, the status of the NHT and the scope of the property rights under the Constitution - deserve ventilation before the courts."
Last week, CAPI, co-founded by former JLP deputy general secretary and defeated general election candidate Dennis Meadows, filed a constitutional motion in the Supreme Court seeking a declaration that taking the money from the trust would amount to a breach of the Constitution.
The motion was filed by 48-year-old St James business Fitzroy Fagan, who says he is a contributor to the fund.
Fagan is contending that withdrawal of the funds from the NHT is a breach of his constitutional right to property under Section 15 of the Charter of Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.