May 8, 2018
SVG holds steady in Rule of Law Index, with high ranking for criminal justice

St Vincent and the Grenadines(SVG) has managed to balance the scales of justice once more in the World Justice Project(WJP) Rule of Law Index, staying at rank 37 of 113 countries.The annual index released by the independent organization WJP seeks to promote the advancement of the rule of law, a concept embodying the general idea that no-one and no institution is above the law.

A comprehensive and exhaustive set of categories and sub categories were used to form questionnaires, and these were distributed to households and experts in each country.

In SVG the households that filled out questionnaires were in Kingstown, Calliaqua and Kingstown Park, and the method by which the data was collected was face-to-face.Constraints on Government powers, absence of corruption, open government, fundamental rights, order and security, regulatory enforcement, civil justice and criminal justice, are the eight categories by which the countries rule of law was measured.After compiling all collected data, the WJP has released the list of all 113 countries, and how they rank overall and by region.

SVG, as opposed to the 34 per cent of countries which noted a declining score, was part of the 37 per cent that recorded a score that was the same as the previous year’s.

Therefore, they missed entering the improved score category as part of the 29 per cent.Ranking 37 in the overall list with 113 countries, with a score of 0.61, SVG ranked ninth out of 30 countries in the region Latin America and the Caribbean.

Among the countries in the region scoring higher on the Index are Barbados, who at rank 30 scored 0.65, but dropped two ranks since the previous year. St Kitts and Nevis ranked at 28 overall with a score of 0.66, and has raised its former rank by two.

Moving up three ranks was St Lucia, who received a score of 0.63 and ranked 33.However, on the opposite end of the scale, the region also held the worst overall performer on the list, Venezuela.

The South American country ranked 113th with a score of 0.29, marking no difference from before.Venezuela’s neighbour Guyana ranked 73 overall with a score of 0.50, although raising its rank by three, and Trinidad and Tobago ranked 48 with a score of 0.56.

The highest overall performer was Denmark, with a score of 0.89.Of the judging categories, SVG ranked highly in Criminal Justice, coming in second of 30 regional countries, and 28th overall.

Within this category the country did well for the sub category of no improper government influence.SVG fell in the category of Open Government, coming in at nineteenth of 30, and overall at 59th, with a score of 0.49. The sub category where problems arose the most for Open Government was the publicizing of laws and government data.Also on the list were Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica and Belize, ranked at 34th, 41st, 36th, 47th and 81st respectively.