Establishment of JOF Haynes Law School cannot be stopped – AG

DPI, GUYANA, Monday, January 22, 2018

Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Basil Williams, S.C., is once again stating firmly that the Government of Guyana is forging ahead with the establishment of the JOF Haynes Law School and is continuing the work which was started under the previous administration.

Hon. Basil Williams, S.C. Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs.

The Attorney General, in response to a question posed by the media regarding the denial of permission for Guyana to undertake the building of the Law School, reasoned that permission must have been granted.

“Why would the Chancellor of the Judiciary at the time, Justice Bernard go to a meeting and talk about sighting at the University of Guyana for the school?” he questioned.

The Minister reiterated that the project is currently in the feasibility stage where the Committee will be examining all the factors, including establishing the Law School under the auspices of the Council of Legal Education (CLE).

He made it clear that the Government of Guyana cannot be stopped from building the Law School, but the country wishes to remain community-minded. As a founding member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), AG Williams said Guyana has the right to establish the institution since there are several in various Caribbean countries.

The Minister said the Committee which comprises the Chancellor of the Judiciary, the Chief Justice, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the University of Guyana and other professionals, is in the process of the identifying the land at the Turkeyen Campus of the University.

A process, which he expects to be completed in the shortest possible time.

Only recently, the AG clarified that his Ministry is in the process of finalising the engagement with Guyana’s Jamaican counterparts in relation to the establishment of the Law School, dispelling claims that the matter has been put on hold.

At a press conference, he made it clear that a statement issued by Chairman of the CLE, Senior Counsel, Reginald Armour and repeated by the former AG Anil Nandlall, stating that Guyana was not given permission to establish the law school had to be withdrawn.

Today, he said that “We are saying that no international organisation is driven by the Opposition and we have an email from him [Reginald Armour] assuring Nandlall that he would put the item on the agenda, without informing me, the sitting Attorney General for Guyana.”

AG Williams had raised concerns with the operations of Armour, whom he said was engaged with members of the Opposition regarding the Law School.

In January 2017, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed with the University of the Caribbean (UCC) and Law College of the Americas (LCA) for the establishment of the JOF Haynes Law School in Guyana.

The establishment of the school is expected to significantly reduce the cost, particularly to Guyanese, to continue with their law studies while attracting other students from across the Caribbean.

 

By: Stacy Carmichael

 

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