Government considering municipal courts

GINA, GUYANA, Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The Government is considering setting up municipal courts countrywide to deal with violations of municipal laws.

Speaking with councillors in Region Two over the weekend, Minister of Communities, Ronald Balkan, said the need for the courts is being made by various organisations.

Minister of Communities, Ronald Balkan addressing councillors in Region 2.

Minister of Communities, Ronald Balkan addressing councillors in Region 2.

According to Bulkan, repeated calls for municipal courts have been made by the Georgetown City Council and the Private Sector so that delinquent tax payers and other violations can be dealt with expeditiously.

Speaking with the Region Two councillors, Bulkan explained that since engaging the Georgetown City Council and holding similar engagements with other councils across the country, the administration is considering setting up municipal courts as a mechanism to address these and other disregard for the authority of municipal councils and non-adherence to regulations.

“It is coming through clear, in all our engagement with all our local government organs, that we would need a dedicated court to be able to address infractions and violations at the local (government) level,” the minister said.

Bulkan noted that unless there is an effective and functioning mechanism, the councils would not be able to meaningfully address and arrest activities which do not help the functioning of the councils.

According to Bulkan, councils has been complaining not only of their inability to rake in  outstanding monies owed by delinquent taxpayers but, issues such as illegal roadside vending and illegal building construction have also been  affecting their revenue bases and impeding their effective functioning.

The issue of roadside vending was one raised during the meeting with the Region Two councillors. Bulkan told the councillors that municipal courts would help in bringing resolution; in an expeditious and efficient manner, to the issues.

A municipal courts is a court whose jurisdiction is limited to a specific municipality. These courts preside only over cases and offenses that take place within their jurisdiction. They provide a forum for the fair and impartial resolution of alleged violations as established by the town ordinance code.

 

By: Macalia Santos

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