When our new Chief Justice was announced, I was genuinely excited…

“Barbados must be the only country where lawyers are on bail and practicing!”

by A Policy Holder

When our new Chief Justice was announced I was genuinely excited. I naively believed that we would see a speedier court system. We’d surely spent enough on a fine new Court Building, but in truth and in fact the new Chief Justice has achieved S*F*A*. There is good reason for this and it relates to the In Chamber hearings by appointment – appointments which are often callously disregarded by both Judges and lawyers.

As I understand it there is an alternate method known as JEMS – Judicial Enforcement Management System. It’s simplicity is just too much for our legal fraternity who are undisciplined and uncontrollable. JEMS would allow the CJ to randomly distribute cases/suits to sitting judges. Each Judge would be responsible for the resolution of the case from start to decision time. There would be no ducking, changes of judges mid-stream as the CJ would on a weekly or fortnightly basis meet with the Judges to see what progress is being made. This system is in place and working effectively in Trinidad (yes, Trinidad) but lawyers and judges here are anti-JEMS.

There is also the question of the legal fraternity policing themselves and the disbarring of dishonest lawyers. I understand that even if there is a Disciplinary Committee in the Barbados Bar Association, it does not sit. If it does it is a toothless committee. Barbados must be the only country where lawyers are on bail and practicing! What a disgraceful story about the American lady swindled out of $100,000.00 and the general view being “What can you expect? It’s Barbados.”

Having said all that, how in name of God can we expect to find a firm of lawyers who will take on dealing with the CLICO and BALICO matter where they have to sue the Directors of those companies, who may be family, or “connected”?

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11 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law

11 responses to “When our new Chief Justice was announced, I was genuinely excited…

  1. 225

    One can always find a firm of lawyers who will take on dealing with the speedy transfer of money from the clients pockets to theirs in an environment of zero results.

  2. robert ross

    You know something…I am sick and tired of the way writers as the present get on the ‘kill off the lawyers’ bandwagon. It’s all good free press stuff but it takes us nowhere. I am not a practitioner and have had my own share of nonsense stuff from them. But the fact remains that most of them are a hard working lot who do their incompetent best – as we all do I suppose. I fail to understand why we expect Olympian performance from them and yet trade in what amounts so much of the time to unsubstantiated gutter press nonsense ourselves.

    Now: if you people want to do something useful: (a) check on the efforts of the Bar Association to work change in the system over the past 12 months, and then (b) how their efforts have met with resistence from the head of the judiciary who talks but otherwise does very little. Let me give you an example. There is a constitutionally sgnificant case relating to weaponry which was finished in January. Judgments were to follow by June. It is now October and, seemingly, nothing. It is the first serious matter the CJ has had to deal with. And yet…nothing. Is the man lazy or simply incompetent?

    So BFP and the rest of you one-song people get off your self-serving pedestals and start thinking and looking. Yes, root out corruption wherever it is but temper your justice with the kind of mercy you would want for yourselves – because frankly you are no better yourselves and your cheap judgementalism is a mockery of what you are.

  3. The Friendly Stranger

    How long are we supposed to tolerate a system where it takes 20 years to hear a civil case? Where lawyers are allowed to repay stolen monnies and then walk free? That happens regularly.

    How long? How many more decades before any changes happen?

    All the Bar done so far is talk and not very well talk at that.

    Change the system in a big way. Don’t give us any more talk. Show positive changes and a plan and a timetable.

    KEEP IT UP BFP!

  4. A policy holder

    It was never my intention to “KILL OFF ALL LAWYERS”. I know many, and many are friends but I would like to PROSECUTE AND JAIL ALL THE DISHONEST LAWYERS! In addition I would like to see the Courts dealing with WHITE COLLAR crime, and not sweeping it under the carpet as mention by another blogger. Is it too much to ask the reputable, honest lawyers, to police the group and deal with the dishonest…

  5. 4

    Ross, c’mon…the sudden demise of rotten lawyers, bankers, politicians, judges et al would be a breath of fresh air to we downtrodden masses in dire need of relief from the survivors who would likely improve their performance.

  6. PLANTATION DEEDS FROM 1926-2012 AND SEE MASSIVE FRAUD ,LAND TAX BILLS AND NO DEEDS

    If lawyers in Barbados were builders we all would get wet when it rained.
    The People have the money , the people want work done , The lawyers get the money and walk away,Lawyers dont go after lawyers , just like or worse in Barbados police dont rat out police , blue line or red line they dont cross.
    Who or what does the AG do? What cases does he fight for the people?
    , We will have to see them starve before they get to work for the monies they receive for work not tried nor done ,

    Yes some lawyers will do the work , but the cases with plenty money moving , they will watch the money and for get you .
    COPY ALL THINGS, PICTURES , ALL THINGS SIGNED, PAPER FOR PAPER, BRING WITNESS, LET YOUR FAMILY KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING.IF YOU DIE BEFORE THE WORK IS DONE ,YOU ALL SO WILL BE DEAD IN THE WATER..WHEN YOU ARE DONE WITH A LAWYER LET THEM KNOW ON PAPER OR A BILL MAY BE RUNNING BEHIND YOUR BACK.
    @Ross, when you get robbed then you will fell the pain.Lets hope that never happens.

  7. robert ross

    @ 4
    Plus ca change………….

  8. robert ross

    or to put it another way 4

    Policy Holder says he was excited at the appointment of the CJ. So were many others. Many including BFP regard his predecessor as a corrupt washout – though not me I have to say. Policy Holder acknowledges that things haven’t changed but blames the attorneys. No: that wont do. Gibson brought the case management idea from Trinidad. It wasn’t exactly an original thought. He said he would introduce it this year. It hasn’t happened and that has NOTHING to do with attorney opposition though there are some difficulties with the idea. Meanwhile since October last the Bar Association has beavered away at reforms and held discussions wth the CJ. Result: nothing. There is much more to it than that of course – of which the (in)famous leaked email is an example. Now the BA is asking members what to do – for a year it has sought change and has been rebuffed. What would you do?

    Mind, I understand the sentiment you express and once shared it……oh this brave new world which was once new and even so to me.

  9. Sunshine Sunny Shine

    Bajans need to stop being afraid of lawyers and their fancy language and start doing a bit of reading for themselves so when them laywers come with their fangle dangle talk, you are not easily duped. Also talk firm with them because alot know that bajans are passive and the moment any authorative figure raise their voices and holla a few big words, dem stupid bajans are easily subdued and defeated.

  10. 2

    ross, who you trying to fool with your “plus ca” fancy talk? We know you are a wizened old fool sucking cigarettes and watching your wrinkles grow. Cyah yuhself, do.

  11. robert ross

    @ Anonymous

    There’s much life in these wrinkles don’t you know…but as for cigarettes…well no. Meanwhile finer points will continue to elude you.