[www.inewsguyana.com] – The People’s Progressive Party has noted its outrage over a recent decision made by Magistrate Charlyn Artiga at the Whim Magistrate’s Court ordering Former President Bharrat Jagdeo not to leave the country without approval from the court.
The ruling was given after Jagdeo appeared before the Magistrate, where he was charged with the offence of racial incitement. The Magistrate released Jagdeo on his own recognisance and ordered him to stay in the country.
“We view this is an ominous sign. We view this as a violation of the Constitutional right and freedom of Cde Jagdeo to travel, as well as a threat to the constitutional rights and freedoms of Guyanese everywhere. We know that persons are charged everyday by the Police with much more serious and grave offenses but they are not expressly prohibited by Magistrates from leaving the Jurisdiction,” a PPP press statement noted.
The Party claimed that these types of action are reminiscent of the notorious Burnham years, “when Opposition Politicians were prevented from leaving Guyana. In less than two weeks into this new administration, these days are upon us already.”
Meanwhile, Jagdeo’s Attorney Anil Nandlall in a statement said “the dubious private criminal charge filed by Christopher Ram against Former President Bharrat Jagdeo was called today at Whim Magistrates’ Court. On the last occasion, Attorneys-at-Law representing the Former President made oral and written submissions that the charge was frivolous, vexatious and without any basis in law and they requested that the same be dismissed by the learned Magistrate.”
He said that to date, no summons has been served upon the Former President in person, or otherwise, to secure his attendance in person before the court as is required by law. As a result, the Former President was duly advised by his Attorneys-at-Law that his presence before the court is unnecessary, at this point in time of the proceedings.
He pointed out that the Magistrate then announced, for the first time that she is over-ruling the preliminary objections and submissions made and that the defendant must appear before her.
“I resolutely maintain that the charges are completely without merit, malicious and concocted and further that we will spare no effort in ensuring that justice is done,” said Nandlall.