JAMAICA | Debunking Observer's Editorial: Swimming against the Tide

JAMAICA | Debunking Observer's Editorial: Swimming against the Tide

KINGSTON,  April 2022 - The PNPYO notes with alarm the position adopted in the last Sunday Observer editorial in seeking to denounce our call for the government to set the process in motion for Jamaica to leave the Privy Council and have the Caribbean Court of Justice as our final appeal court during this 60th anniversary year.

We maintain that the position assumed in the editorial amounts to swimming against the tide. Jamaica is one of only six or so remaining former colonies of Britain which still cling to the Privy Council. More than 40 have left. We dare to hope that no organization, and in particular, no youth organization would blindly seek to follow the Observer along that unfortunate and obsolete path.

The editorial asserts that "Young bud no know storm". If that is meant to convey a message that more experience awaits us, we cannot complain or disagree. But in this, we feel confident and privileged that our thinking is in alignment with views that have been publicly expressed by members of our senior judiciary at home and in the Privy Council and who have strongly encouraged the move.

We align with the Jamaican Bar Association which, along with other civil society organizations, have as long ago as 2015 publicly given full endorsement to the move.  We align with Guyana, Barbados, Belize and Dominica, our neighbours in the region, who have taken the step and from whom we have heard and seen, no complaints about 'a fatal path', as is claimed in the editorial.

On the contrary, we align with the assessment of the acknowledged worth and integrity that the CCJ attracts globally that has allowed for its acceptance in the International Consortium for Court Excellence. We therefore stand by, and repeat, our call for the relevant Bills to be quickly dusted off and tabled in Parliament. 

This aligns with other individuals and institutions, including from the media, that continue to make the call which supports the message sent to Her Majesty, the Head of State, that 'we are moving on', and not with the outdated views put forward in the Observer editorial.

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