AG applies for stay of CJ ruling on removal of Parliamentary Secretaries

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Sarah Brown and Vickash Ramkissoon

Attorney General Anil Nandlall has applied to the Guyana Court of Appeal for a stay of a judgement handed down by Chief Justice Roxane George in which she declared that the appointment of Vickash Ramkissoon and Sarah Browne as Parliamentary Secretaries was unlawful.

In her ruling delivered on April 20, 2021, the Chief Justice held that the appointment of  Ramkissoon and Browne as Parliamentary Secretaries was done in violation of the Constitution of Guyana.

But the Attorney General, in his appeal, is arguing that Justice George’s decision is erroneous and misconceived in law. He argues, too, that the decision does not accord with the clear and unambiguous binding language of the Constitution.

Nandlall has since moved to the Court of Appeal asking for a stay of the Chief Justice’s ruling until the appeal is heard and determined.

The effect of the Chief Justice ruling means that the Speaker of the National Assembly would have to remove Browne and Ramkissoon as Parliamentarians by following procedures outlined in the standing orders.

Late last year, Opposition Chief Whip Christopher Jones moved to the High Court challenging the appointment of the Parliamentary Secretaries.

He contended that since Browne and Ramkissoon were on the List of Candidates presented by the PPP/C for the March 2, 2020, General and Regional Elections, they cannot be appointed as non-elected Members of the National Assembly and Parliamentary Secretaries.

Browne is the Parliamentary Secretary to the Amerindian Affairs Ministry, while Ramkissoon was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Agriculture Ministry.