Barbara Gayle and Jerome Reynolds, Gleaner Writers
The long-running dual citizenship case against Member of Parliament-elect Ian Hayles, may soon come to an end, as the parties involved are now in talks with a view to reaching a settlement.
When the case came up for a pre-trial hearing in the Supreme Court yesterday, Hayle’s lawyer, Raymond Clough, maintained that his client had renounced his US nationality before Nomination Day for the 2007 elections.
However, Clough said with the recent re-election of Hayles as the Western Hanover MP, both parties are now holding talks to bring the matter to a close.
Clough said the lawyers are also negotiating the matter of legal costs.
The case is set to return to court on June 26.
It is expected that at that time, the lawyers will indicate to the judge how they intend to proceed.
Following the 2007 general election, Donovan Hamilton, the Jamaica Labour Party candidate for Western Hanover filed an election petition in the Supreme Court against Hayles.
Hamilton alleged that Hayles was an American at the time he was nominated to contest the September 2007 general election.
Hayles denied the allegation and filed a claim in the Court of Appeal, arguing that Hamilton had brought the matter to the Supreme Court, outside of the 21-day period allowed.
The Appeals Court threw out Hayles’ arguments and ordered that the matter returns to the Supreme Court for a hearing.
Hayles then sought leave to take the matter to the UK-based Privy Council but the application was denied.