Former Appeals Court Judge calls for total move away from Privy Council
Thomas WR Astaphan KC, former Justice of Appeal of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court
News
January 16, 2024
Former Appeals Court Judge calls for total move away from Privy Council

A former Justice of Appeal of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court has made a call for all states in the region to “move away” from the Privy Council in Britain.

This call was made by St Kitts born Thomas WR Astaphan KC.

Astaphan KC made the call on Friday, January, 12, as he delivered remarks at the opening of the new law term of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC).

The official opening which was streamed live from Grenada was preceded by church services and processions to the various courts in Member States.

“The time has come now when all of us in the West Indies need to accede to the Caribbean Court of Justice, and move away from the Privy Council.

“Let our own people, people who are of us, and we of them, who were born with us and grew up with us, and experience with us our social, cultural and economic experiences, let them sit in judgement of me and of us, our own people.”

Astaphan KC, who is a former High Court Judge went on to say that “it is time for us all…to begin the transition from the Privy Council to the Caribbean Court of Justice.”

The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) is headquartered in Trinidad and Tobago.

The court, which is the regional judicial tribunal, was established on February 14,2001.

St Vincent and the Grenadines is among the countries which signed the Agreement establishing the CCJ but does not yet have this court as its final Court of Appeal.

The CCJ is the final Court of Appeal in civil and criminal matters for four CARICOM member states:

Barbados, Belize, Dominica and Guyana.

Vincentian, Justice Adrian Saunders is President of the CCJ, having been appointed on July 4, 2018.