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PM appeals to Bayliss Frederick after attack on CCJ Justice

PM appeals to Bayliss Frederick after attack on CCJ Justice


Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves has pleaded with attorney-at-law Bayliss Frederick to publicly apologise to Justice Adrian Saunders of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) for comments he made about Saunders on Thursday.{{more}}

“I want, through this medium, to plead with Bayliss, if he has any sense of decency left in him, to go back on the radio and apologise to Adrian Saunders and to the CCJ,” Gonsalves said on Sunday, as he called into a programme on Star FM.

Frederick, 88, on the New Democratic Party (NDP) radio programme — “NDP Night Time” — last Thursday made certain statements in relation to Saunders, which a lawyer told SEARCHLIGHT are capable of a defamatory meaning.

Among other things, Frederick said there is a diabolical pattern emerging from matters, which have taken place recently, which are contrary to democratic principles.

He referred to the arrest of his daughter, opposition senator Vynnette Frederick, last Wednesday.

He also mentioned a case before the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court in which Castries is seeking an interpretation from the court about whether the St Lucian constitution would allow for the London-based Privy Council to be replaced by the CCJ as that country’s court of appeal by an act of Parliament, instead of through a referendum.

St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) has been listed as an interested party in that matter, as the Constitution of SVG is similar to St Lucia’s.

Mr Frederick said on the programme that Gonsalves wants more than anything for this country to move away from the Privy Council to the CCJ.

Gonsalves, however, said that he does not need an apology from Frederick, as he knows that even if he apologises, it would not be “a well – meant apology.

“It is par for the course that Bayliss would want to cuss Ralph and a whole set of people in the NDP would want to do that…” the prime minister said.

Gonsalves referred to a statement Mr Frederick made in 2008, when he (Gonsalves) had been accused of rape.

Mr Frederick had said at that time that the prime minister had two choices, either to resign or commit suicide.

“But yet, when his daughter is charged, after a due process, he attacks everybody. I don’t know how I come into this,” Gonsalves said. “I had nothing to do with that. And how Justice Saunders’ name comes into that, is another mystery.”

Saunders, a Vincentian, is one of seven members of the CCJ, which was inaugurated in April 2005.

After Mr Frederick’s comments, his daughter Vynnette, who was hosting the radio programme, disassociated NICE Radio and the NDP from the remarks.