Daily Archives: August 10, 2007

Waiting For Barbados Chief Justice Simmons

When we wrote A Hope And A Prayer For Barbados Chief Justice David Simmons, Sir David had just returned from a Cayman Islands conference on environmental law. We hoped that the Chief Justice would have brought back some ideas and a renewed sense of the urgency of our environmental failings.

Silence.

Silence is what we got. How many of our tax dollars were spent to send Chief Justice David Simmons to stay in the Grand Cayman Ritz-Carlton and entourage recently so he could update himself as to what judges and more importantly the leading jurist of our country could do to take the lead in environmental protection and sustainable development? And what did we get from it?

Nothing.

The man goes off to this internationally important conference with great fanfare and then, upon his return does…nothing. No report. No update. No speech to tell us what he learned and what he is going to do for the country. By now David Simmons ought to have used the momentum from the conference to show Barbados the way. We thought he would speak out and insist that this was an agenda and time that was past due. We thought he would put before the public an agenda that would start discussion and make people think about the future of our island and that we ought to veer away from the present overzealous efforts to despoil it. And what better time to get these issues into the people’s minds than an election year?

By now our thoughts start to wander back to the opinion of some of our contributors. They argued that we were naïve. They said that the only reason David Simmons was appointed to succeed former Chief Justice Williams was that the latter had refused to let the prime minister push him around, tell him what to do, while David, one of the three blind mice with his old crony Owen Arthur would not make that ‘mistake’. “He knows where his bread is buttered and where his big shiny car comes from”, they argued. “He is BLP top to bottom always was always will be”, they said. “His only job is to make sure the courts don’t stand in the way of the ever increasing gorging at the trough of Owing and his bag men.”

“And dirty David himself? Why he insisted on stealing the job from better qualified people was that he wanted to whitewash himself.”

‘Never mind the abuse and dirty tricks of my past, no, now that I am Chief Justice I have the podium to rewrite history and ordain that I have always been clean, pure, saintly.’

“But really he is just a retread. The justice system is in shambles. The profiteering has run amok, And what do we get from himself? He runs off to lofty legal conferences and pats himself on the back in front of people who are too ignorant or afraid to speak up and show him for what he really is, a toady.”

And so now we too, reluctantly, note that those shiny robes and halo that David Simmons inherited when he got the big job are showing a little tarnish.

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