Thu | Feb 21, 2019

New CCJ president to be sworn in today

Published:Thursday | September 1, 2011 | 11:34 AM

BASSETERRE, St Kitts, CMC – At least one head of state and three Caribbean Community (CARICOM) prime ministers will attend the inauguration of Sir Dennis Byron as the new President of the Trinidad and Tobago-based Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) on Thursday.

Dominica’s President Dr. Nicholas Liverpool as well as the Prime Minister of Belize Dean Barrow, the Antigua and Barbuda’s Prime Minister, Baldwin Spencer, and the host Prime Minister Dr. Denzil Douglas, who is also the CARICOM Chairman, will attend the swearing-in ceremony.

An official statement here said that Sir Dennis, who replaces Trinidadian Michael De La Bastide, as head of the CCJ will be sworn in during a ceremony at Government House in the presence of Chief Justices of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), Jamaica, The Bahamas, Belize, Trinidad and Tobago and Barbados.

The event will also be witnessed by the Chancellor of the Judiciary in Guyana, Attorneys General from several Caribbean countries as well as judges barristers and family members.

The CCJ was established in 2001 as a replacement of the London-based {rivy Council as the region’s final court.

However, while most of the CARICOM countries have signed on to the original jurisdiction of the CCJ that also acts as an international tribunal interpreting the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas that governs the regional integration grouping, only Barbados, Guyana and Belize are signatories to the appellate jurisdiction.

During Thursday’s ceremony addresses will be delivered by Justice De La Bastide, as well as from Prime Minister Douglas.

Sir Dennis, 68, is expected to address the more than 500 guests at the ceremony which will also be televised.

Kittian- born, Sir Dennis has had a brilliant legal career serving as a member of the Privy Council, Chief Justice of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court as well as President of the Commonwealth Judicial Education Institute (CJEI). He was also president of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR).

He has written many articles and publications and also holds the first Yogis and Keddy Chair in Human Rights Law at Dalhousie University Nova Scotia, Canada.