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Changes to St Kitts boundaries on hold, Parliament dissolved


Tue, Jan 20, 2015

The High Court in St Kitts last Friday granted an ex-parte injunction restraining the St Kitts-Nevis government from proclaiming the constituency boundary changes ahead of the next general elections.{{more}}

This followed a dissolution of Parliament earlier that afternoon by Prime Minister Dr Denzil Douglas.

Attorney Chris Hamel-Smith, the senior counsel representing the Opposition, said that the injunction was granted Friday, even as the Government was moving to have the boundaries changed.

“The judge has issued an injunction restraining that proclamation from being made, in order to stop the report from coming into effect.

“In layman’s terms it means that the judge has said things must not change until the court has an opportunity to look at the whole matter properly, and not under the unfair and undue pressure and haste that was created here this afternoon,” Hamel-Smith said on Winn FM radio station in St Kitts.

Earlier that afternoon, Prime Minister Dr Denzil Douglas announced that he had advised the Governor General to dissolve the Parliament with immediate effect.

Speaking from the steps of Government Headquarters on Church Street in Basseterre, Dr Douglas said that an election date would be announced at a later date.

This followed an emergency sitting which saw the passage of a resolution, giving way for Governor General Sir Edmund Lawrence to sign a Proclamation which would effect revised Electoral Boundaries whenever Parliament is dissolved.

Speaking under the agenda item entitled “Motions” at an Emergency Sitting of the Assembly on Friday afternoon, Prime Minister Douglas stated, “the Proclamation speaks to the Boundaries as have been revised after several years and months of sitting of the Constituency Boundaries Commission.”

According to the Prime Minister, the Constitution, under Section 50, outlines the process that is to be followed to give effect to proposed revised Electoral Boundaries.

Prime Minister Douglas read the Draft Proclamation into the minutes of the Assembly. (From the Barbados Nation)