Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 4th 2017 Contents YVONNE WEBB
In spite of the imbroglio that
exists in the Judiciary and the
historic and unprecedented Law
Association vote of no confidence
inChief Justice Ivor Archie which
calls for him to step down, Attor-
ney General Faris Al-Rawi says it
is still not time for the Govern-
ment to intervene.
Responding to the series of events
centred around the short-lived ap-
pointment and resignation of former
chief magistrate Marcia Ayers-Cae-
sar from the bench, Al-Rawi relied
on Section 137 of the Constitution
of T&T as the basis of his argument.
This section deals with the removal
of a judge from office.
“There is a fundamental separation
of powers we observe. In this country
the executive has no role in the Judici-
ary,” he said in response to questions
from the media about the likelihood
of the Government making an inter-
vention to settle the issues which have
brought the Judiciary under heavy
“Section 137 of the Constitution is
very, very clear as to when an execu-
tive gets involved with the Judiciary.
Certainly those circumstances are
very far away. At least from my po-
sition right now, we don’t consider we
should get involved in breaching the
separation of powers,” he explained.
Prior to a tour of San Fernando West
constituency to view infrastructural
projects with Works Minister Rohan
Sinanan and Mayor Junia Regrello
yesterday morning, Al-Rawi said
that there was an active democracy
in this country.
“Certain quarters have come out
and have been very democratic in
their purpose, but the Government
has no role in the positioning of
the Judiciary and certain elements
that are questioning the Judiciary,”
he said. This was in response to last
Thursday’s special general meeting of
some 500 members of the Law Asso-
ciation, the majority of which voted
in favour of the no-confidence vote
in Archie and the JLSC.
Archie, who is currently in Barba-
dos where he is attending a law con-
ference, is quoted as saying, “I don’t
think you can expect my resignation.”
The AG said at this point all
the Government can do is to take
note of the situation and continue to
press on with the work they are doing
in the development of the courts, in
the administration of justice from a
legislative point of view in terms of
their work in the Parliament.
No PM will venture down
that road if it is an exercise
in futility—Imran Khan
Commenting on the Government’s
position and the section which deals
with the removal of a judge from
office, former president of the As-
sembly of Southern Lawyers Imran
Khan said it was an extremely high
threshold that has to be met and no
prime minister would venture down
that road if it is an exercise in futility.
He said any government would
havelimited function in this exercise,
because the circumstances in which
a judge could be removed are very
specific. “Section 137 speaks of the
removal of a judge from office based
on hisinability to perform the func-
tions of his office, arising from in-
firmity of mind or body or any other
cause, orfor misbehaviour. Only if the
circumstances fall within those two
categories the Government can act.
“In the case of the CJ, as opposed to
a normal judge, if the Prime Minister
feels there is sufficient information
that a particular case falls within that
bracket, then he can present to the
President the issue of removing the
CJ ought to be investigated.”
Khan said what has transpired so far
with the Law Association expressing
their views on the perceivedrole of the
CJ in the issue—which has left some
53 outstanding cases Ayers-Caesar
was presiding over in a tailspin and
uncertainty over whether or not she
resigned—was only moral suasion.
Khan said in the circumstances
there are no compelling information
or grounds to suggest that this is an
appropriate case for the removal of
the judge to be investigated.
Ramesh: Serious implications for
independence of Judiciary
Contacted for comment on the is-
sue, former attorney generalRamesh
Lawrence Maharaj, who is being
consulted by Ayers-Caesar, said, “I
am of the full view that the events
which have occurred, which led to
the purported removal of the judge,
has serious implications for the in-
dependence of the Judiciary, rule of
law, and security of tenure of a judge.
“I am of the firm view that I have
a duty to the legal profession and to
the public if necessary to vindicate
the Constitution, the rule of law and
the injustice which has been done to
Maharaj said, “I was consulted by
the Honourable Justice Madam Mar-
cia Ayers-Caesar whom I believe in
law is still a High Court judge.”
He did not say whether she was
taking legal action, but promised “to
comment in a short space of time”.
(See pages A10, A16)
the company with immediate effect
pursuant to the provisions of Clause
11© (iii) of your letter of appointment
dated the 18th of September 2012.”
Hosein said he was surprised that his
lawyers who were part of the tribunal
were not aware of the final report.
When asked if he would be pursuing
the matter legally, he said: “My law-
yers have not seen the letter yet, they
haven’t been informed, they (lawyers)
have not seen anything, so they will be
the ones to decide.”
Hosein has been asked to surrender
his company vehicle as well as other
company property in his possession.
I am confirming he no longer
works with us—chairman
Guardian Media also contacted
Lake Asphalt chairman Christoper
John-Williams who said: “All I am
confirming is that he no longer works
Sunday, June 4, 2017 guardian.co.tt
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Deadline for applications is 12th June 2017.
It’s not yet time for Govt to act
Senior producer, CNC3
The chief executive officer of Lake Asphalt
of T&T Ltd Leary Hosein has been fired via a
telephone call. A termination letter was also
delivered to Hosein’s mailbox yesterday.
Guardian Media exclusively obtained a copy of the
termination letter dated June 3, 2017, which reads:
“...you are hereby terminated as CEO of the company
with immediate effect...”
It was on June 23, 2016, Hosein was suspended,
pending an investigation into the award of a $100
million contract days before the 2015 general election.
A tribunal—comprising attorney Keith Scotland,
National Energy Company legal and corporate sec-
retariat manager Camille Blackman and First Cit-
izens director Jayselle McFarlane—was then set up
to investigate the allegations. Hearings were held on
January 3, March 15 and March 31, 2017. Guardian
Media understands that the tribunal submitted its
report to the board on May 29.
Now 15 months after his suspension, Hosein re-
ceived a telephone call from chairman of the Lake
Asphalt board Christopher John-Williams inform-
ing him that his employment was terminated with
“I returned a missed call from the chairman and he
informed me that the board took a decision to ter-
minate my employment. He (Christopher John-Wil-
liams) said they got the findings from the tribunal
and they acted on it,” Hosein said.
Hosein said he was informed by the chairman that
a copy of the termination letter was delivered to his
“While I am disappointed, like I told the chairman,
I am glad it happened in Ramadan because this is the
greatest month for Muslims and whatever happens
in this month is Allah’s will,” Hosein added.
The termination letter, which was signed by cor-
porate secretary Ayanna Sylvester, reads:
“The board of directors has carefully considered
the finding of the Tribunal comprising of Mr Keith
Scotland, Ms Camille Blackman and Ms Jayselle Mc-
Farlane which held hearings on 3rd January 2017, 15th
March 2017 and 31st March 2017 and at which hearings
you were represented by attorneys and had ample op-
portunity to present your case and to defend yourself
against the charged (as amended) dated 14th June
2016, which were laid by the company against you.
“A copy of the Report of the Tribunal dated the
29th of May, 2017 is attached hereto.
“The tribunal, having found you guilty of ten (10)
charges proffered, and the board, having accepted
their finding and determined that your conduct as
detailed therein amounts to gross and/or serious
misconduct, you are hereby terminated as CEO of
Lake Asphalt CEO fired by phone call
AG on Judiciary imbroglio:
The statements attributed to attorney Annabelle
Sooklal in the T&T Guardian’s article Political hys-
teria were not made by her. Sooklal said she “at-
tended the Law Association meeting on Thursday
but I did not speak”.
The Guardian regrets any inconvenience caused.
GETTING IT RIGHT
Lake Asphalt CEO Leary Hosein
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