Prezzie’s legal advisor, Solicitor General (SG) of the AG’s Chambers, itself advised by four “old heads”, argued to the High Court that the said court cannot inquire into Prezzie’s act of unilateralism in appointing (Chief?) Justice James Patterson to the GECOM Chair.
There used to be FIVE old heads, one being the said James Patterson, who’s presumably resigned and won’t be offering advice henceforth. Scout’s and Judge’s honour!!
There is, of course, the conflict of interest, if (Chief?) Justice Patterson was one of those who’d initially advised Prezzie that he could cut the GECOM Knot via the Doctrine of Presidential Unilateralism. But your Eyewitness won’t pursue that issue right now, seeing as to how Justices in general, and (Chief?) Justices in particular, are men of integrity and honour – even if their pens do slip every now and then!
According to the SG for the AG, on the matter of Prezzie’s unilateralism, he “is not required to consult, consider and account to the Leader of the Opposition in the exercise of his own independent and deliberate judgment.” So what about the small matter of Constitutional Art 161 compelling Prezzie to select from a list of six “fit and proper” names to be submitted by the Opposition Leader? And that Pressie had already considered THREE lists?
“Bah! Humbug!” retorted the SG for the AG. The Court would violate the principles of the separation of powers, spirit and intention of the Constitution, and affront to the rule of law if it rules that Prezzie must choose one of the submitted names!!
Now, for the SG (for the AG) to be making these assertions, she’s obviously interpreting the Constitution — which she invokes.
But authoritative interpretation of the Constitution — Judicial Review — is the sole bailiwick of the Court! And the SG for the AG — even if advised by four old heads — cannot possibly tell the court how to conduct that interpretation! THAT would constitute a violation of the separation of powers doctrine. The only time the Court may defer to the Executive or Legislature is if the issue can be considered a “political question”.
This kicks in only when there aren’t judicially manageable norms for scrutinizing such political decisions. The intent of the framers to ensure political consensus via ART 161 provides such norms.
The SG for the AG also seems to be arguing that the Court can’t be involved in the subjective matter of Prezzie’s decision making. But in S.R. Bommai’s case, the Indian Court held: “though subjective satisfaction of the President cannot be reviewed but the material on which satisfaction is based open to review…”
Like the reasons for rejecting those 18 names!
…the Socialist Co-op utopia
So now that Prezzie has come out of the closet — that he was a card-carrying member of the PNC since he was a Cadet in 1965, and that he will fulfil the vision of Founder Leader Burnham — is he now going to finally justify his policies ideologically? Folks had been wondering about all the pomp and ceremony Prezzie was insisting on — at the cost of billions and billions — even as the economy is imploding.
Now we know. Just as Burnham introduced the Mass Games back in the seventies when his economy was imploding, at least he was determined to go down in style; if not Gingham style, at least socialist North Korean style!! The policy on sugar? Burnham closed 2 estates – Versailles and Leonora. Closing three, Prezzie’s done him one better! The ideology? Starve out your enemies!!
And the oil money coming down the pike? Just look at what Burnham did with the 1975 sugar windfall. Pi55ed it away and gave all Guyana “hydro”!!
…an obedient society
Wondering why Prezzie’s focusing on beefing up the Disciplined Forces. Silly you!! The founder leader had increased the said forces where we had the highest civilian/military ratio in the world – 1: 35
That’ll pacify the Opposition!