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Daly: Archie’s secret Judge supporters should declare themselves in interest of fair appeal

“In the event of an appeal, I believe that it is incumbent on any member of the Court of Appeal who is assigned to the appeal to state, either in open Court or in Chambers in the presence of all counsel, that he or she is not one of those who previously expressed support for the Chief Justice in the recent media release.”

The following nedia statement, which speaks to a potential issue involving the case of the Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago (LATT) against Chief Justice Ivor Archie, was submitted by Martin Daly, Senior Counsel:

Photo: Chief Justice and JLSC chair Ivor Archie (centre) during the 2011 National Awards.
(Copyright News.gov.tt)

It is appropriate to be restrained on commenting on the current legal contest between the Law Association and the Chief Justice. However, I believe that, in the event of an appeal from the Judgement of Madam Justice Kangaloo delivered on Tuesday last, there is a an urgent matter of due process that must be considered.

I emphasise that my concern is not one that is in any way addressed to the conduct of the case by Madam Justice Kangaloo, who disposed of a difficult case with commendable promptitude.

My concern arises out of the fact that sometime ago it was reported that a number of judges, who remained anonymous, issued a media statement in support of the Chief Justice related to some of the allegations which feature in the legal contest between the Law Association and the Chief Justice.

In the event of an appeal, I believe that it is incumbent on any member of the Court of Appeal who is assigned to the appeal to state, either in open Court or in Chambers in the presence of all counsel, that he or she is not one of those who previously expressed support for the Chief Justice in the recent media release.

Anything short of such a declaration may undermine public trust in the appeal process in this important case. No doubt those charged with assigning judges to the appeal will be sensitive to this concern.

Photo: President Anthony Carmona (centre) is flanked by Magistrate Marcia Ayers-Caesar (left) and Chief Justice Ivor Archie.
(Copyright Trinidad Guardian)

A subsequent statement on the purported grant of sabbatical leave to the Chief Justice by the President, which has been featured in the media, will be forthcoming from me.

About Martin Daly

Martin Daly
Martin G Daly SC is a prominent attorney-at-law. He is a former Independent Senator and past president of the Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago. He is chairman of the Pat Bishop Foundation and a steelpan music enthusiast.

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135 comments

  1. Now the Chief Justice has decided to spare the President from his impending battle with the Prime Minister and take vacation leave instead…
    Archie is giving a great impression of a man fleeing a burning building!

    • “The Law Association in the instant case places, heavy, if not exclusive reliance on section 5(f) of the LPA as its statutory mandate for its enquiry and/or investigation into the allegations against the Honourable Chief Justice.”

      Countenanced against:

      “This Constitution is the supreme law of Trinidad and Tobago, and any other law that is inconsistent with this Constitution is void to the extent of the inconsistency.”

      The inconsistency is that the Constitution has laid out procedure for the investigation and removal of the CJ, and such a procedure, per the Constitution, does not contemplate involvement from LATT.

      In layman’s terms, LATT fass and outta place. But never mind that, or the Constitution (change dat!!), we should carry on with this pappyshow because it “good for transparency.”

    • It might be dry reading for some, but I think the Opinion is a very good Constitutional exposition of the issue. Whenever there is a dispute arising from the interpretation of a statute, one of the ways to try to resolve it is to look at the “legislative intent” behind the statute. This Opinion takes that into consideration by examining the committee notes from 1974 when the relevant section of the Constitution was being drafted. It’s pretty clear that a great deal of thought was put into how the removal of a judge should be approached. LATT overlooks all of this to assert its own authority.

  2. In today’s Express Karen Tesheira properly deals with LATT, Gobin and Dalys foolish suggestion

    • Kyon Esdelle let me go back and get it .

    • The Chief Justice-the calls for him to step down

      PERMIT me to raise three points concerning the Chief Justice and the calls for him to step down.

      The first point concerns the decision of Madame Justice Kangaloo in which she determined, inter alia, that while persons, including the Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago (LATT), were free to submit complaints to the Prime Minister pursuant to the provisions of s.137 of the Constitution, that the submission of such complaints did not include, as a preliminary step thereto, a power to investigate the complaints.

      It is my view that the LATT’s contention that s.5 of the Law Profession Act (LPA) empowers it to investigate the complaint against the Chief Justice, a contention which constitutes a main ground of appeal, is inherently flawed. Implicit in a power to investigate is a power or authority from the very outset to call upon the subject of such investigation to answer or submit himself or herself to questions posed by the investigating body, at pain of standing the consequences of not so doing.

      An investigation without such power from the get-go is stillborn.

      By way of contrast both the disciplinary committee of the LATT and a tribunal established under s.137 of the Constitution are clothed from the very outset with the legal authority to investigate.

      In the case of the LATT, LATT is empowered to investigate attorneys-at-law by, inter alia, calling upon the attorney who is the subject of a complaint, to respond in a prescribed form to the complaints made against him for purposes of determining whether or not there is a case to answer, failing which the attorney stands the consequences of his or her non-compliance.

      In the case of the s.137 provision of the Constitution, the tribunal so established is clothed with the power or legal authority from the outset to call upon the Chief Justice to answer the complaints made against him failing which the Chief Justice stands the consequences of the Tribunal findings.

      The point is that the LATT has no legal authority to call upon a judge or the Chief Justice to answer any questions it may wish to pose, a critical component of any valid investigation.

      As such, any purported investigation which lacks such fundamental power or authority is stillborn, impotent at the very outset.

      It for this reason it is submitted that it was never contemplated by the framers of the LPA that the broad provisions of s.5 conferred on the LATT would include the power to conduct an investigation as a preliminary step to filing with the Prime Minister a complaint concerning the Chief Justice.

      The second point I wish to raise concerns, in my respectful view, the undignified and intemperate language of Madame Justice Gobin in what has descended into a public spat with the Chief Justice over his continuation in office, her commentary having found itself time and again in the public domain via leaked e-mails.

      It brings to mind a discussion I had with former president Noor Hassanali TC who was also a former high court judge when I was a lecturer at the Hugh Wooding Law School.

      I asked him what he considered the most critical characteristic for a judge to possess. Without hesitation he answered that the number one quality is ‘judicial temperament’.

      The question of judicial temperament was also commented upon in the Mustill Tribunal Report.

      The Mustill Tribunal Report was drafted so as to determine pursuant to the provisions of s.137 of the Constitution whether or not there were grounds for the Tribunal to refer the question of the removal of then-Chief Justice Sat Sharma to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (the Report concluded there was none).

      However at page 90 of the Report, the judges had this to say about the conduct of CJ Sharma: ‘His conduct during the time under review was not in our judgment without blemish’, conduct which included ‘his intemperate press release’. The Tribunal noted further on that point that the CJ had ‘a propensity during his oral evidence to speak and write more freely than was wise and without the balanced sensitivity and distance which should be the hallmarks of a senior judge’. (emphasis mine).

      If indeed judicial temperament is a sine qua non of a judge, this propensity of Justice Gobin to speak more freely than is wise as evidenced by her injudicious and intemperate commentary on no less a topic than the Chief Justice’s continuation in office, does little to inspire respect for the judiciary and may well do more to bring the judiciary into disrepute. It may also explain in large measure why Justice Gobin has been bypassed for promotion to the Court of Appeal while judges junior to her in terms of tenure of office, but no more talented, have been elevated to the Court of Appeal.

      My third point concerns the call, nay the demands, of Martin Daly SC for Court of Appeal judges to in effect unmask themselves, show their hands as it were and disclose to the public whether all or any of them participated in the advertisement published in one of the daily newspaper in which judges gave their account of what transpired in a meeting with the Chief Justice with regard to the provision of security for members of the judiciary.

      Of course this begs the question what is the purpose of such demand if only to have such judges, if any, recuse themselves in the hearing of the appeal to Justice Kangaloo’s judgment– presumably on the ground of bias in favour of the CJ. If that is indeed the intent behind the demand does it not follow that those who chose not to participate could be accused of bias–this time against the CJ in what has been described as a ‘split judiciary’ as reported by a newspaper. Is Daly suggesting that only those who did not participate should hear the matter. If he is concerned about bias which I presume is the reason for the demand, is the same risk not being run of bias but this time against the Chief Justice.

      In closing, it comes as no surprise that Mr Reginald Dumas felt constrained to withdraw from further commentary on the Chief Justice issue, whatever his opinion, perhaps because like many of us he may suspect that in this call for the Chief Justice to step down, there is more in it than meets the eye, or as the colloquial saying goes, ‘there is more in the mortar than the pestle’.

      Karen Nunez-Tesheira is former government minister.

      Sophia Chote’s column returns next week.

      KAREN NUNEZ-TESHEIRA

      An investigation without such power from the get-go is stillborn.

    • Respectfully the conduct of Archie has not be dealt with. Taking nothing away from Karen Nunez-Tesheira analysis , even the man in the street is aware that the LATT lack subject matter jurisdiction in the disciplining of the chief justice.The Law Association has a free speech right to make a complaint against Archie, the problem is they wanted to dot their “i”s and “t” s,and make a verified complaint but they went overboard like the old irish probate lawyer whose will was held to be invalid by reason of having three witnesses to its execution, when only two was required by law.

    • Christopher Lewis everyone has a free speech right. That does not equate ‘power to investigate”.

    • Brian Harry I have not disagreed on that point you know. In my view all they had to do is make a complaint against Archie to the PM, and thereafter if the PM did not act on their complaint, I am of the view that judicial review of the PM’s decision would be appropriate.

    • Brian, I thought Karen’s piece was very weak on all three points. Point one, I don’t agree that any action that cannot end with the big stick is a waste of time. That is similar to the line Darryl Smith used to avoid getting involved in Thema Williams/Marisa Dick/TTGF fiasco. And it would mean enquiries like the 1990 coup enquiry should never have happened. The LATT might be better placed to get answers than the Media and you act as though the enquiry could not also find Archie’s behaviour was exemplary and end the inquisition once and for all.
      Her second point: Gobin doesn’t speak for LATT, Daly and everyone else.
      Her third point is that everyone who DIDN’T support Archie is potentially biased the other way. That is so stupid that I don’t think I need to even touch it.

    • Christopher we might be quite aligned. We all want proper interrogation of conduct in public office and it must become the cornerstone of our democracy. However, doing so without proper process and locus standi, is not the way to go. As a nation we must begin to follow due process. Secondly, that so many like the writer of the post we are discussing, seem to simply take sides and not once look themselves in the mirror and ask with all this Christian conviction “am I acting impartially and in the best interest of the law, due process and TT?”

    • Lasana thats not how I read what she wrote. She’s simply saying that LATT has no locus and further that they cannot call the CJ to answer questions thus the inquiry is one sided. I completely agree with her on Gobin’s outbursts. She did not connect Gobin to LATT. I’ve already stated what I think of Daly’s nonsense – asking one side to show their undies and the other remains covered is in street talk “bullshit” – we say bias (in other words we hide so much behind classist arseness)

    • Brian because the LATT cannot force Archie to do something should not stop them from holding enquiry on matter that could affect (and probably already has) the reputation of the judiciary.
      Saying that “unless I can use the big stick I best do nothing at all” is just a very weak statement to me for all the reasons I gave earlier. And plenty more too I’m sure because that was off the top of my head.
      MATT held a probe after its executive–during the term of Judy Raymond–issued releases involving the Trinidad Guardian at a time when Raymond was Guardian editor in chief but in war with management and potentially stood to benefit from those releases.
      MATT couldn’t sanction Raymond or the Guardian.
      So by Karen’s weak logic, MATT should have done nothing. Do you agree with that?

    • Lasana Liburd jo one said do nothing at all!!!! But you can’t build justice on an unlawful process. Of course as a body you investigate but assume onto yourselves the power to trigger impeachment and all that nonsense. The investigation will never be complete until they can also interview him and they cannot demand such. We cannot build a Just and moral society without due process and adherence to the law

    • Lasana by the way I support vigilanteism too. If LATT could play who is we?

    • Did LATT say they planned to impeach? If they are trying to clear up a scandal that affects the reputation of the judiciary, then I am for that and hope that it is a fair and even handed enquiry.
      It would be improper for LATT to adopt an aggressive tone at this point.

    • Lasana Liburd The only defensible point was a pretty much well traversed one. All that talk about Sharma and Carol is irrelevant and is no excuse for Archie alleged and actual conduct and the PM’s inaction.Just red herring. All of us must learn to see our biases, and if we don’t reflect honestly when it is pointed out.

    • Lasana Karen’s points are actually well-made. 1. If you lack the authority to investigate then anything that flows from that investigation is null. Since by law there is no right to investigate why should he court create one for theme?

      2. Christine’s conduct borders on mischief and while unrelated to the substantive issue, is fairly dealt with here.

      3. If stating that Archie didn’t
      T pressure them to hire any one security company means they are biased in favor of him, then of course such a specious premise would hold that others should similarly come out to either substantiate or refute the allegation.

    • Nigel, I stated a few comments above why I disagree.

    • Excerpt from Judges’ statement: “It can therefore be without challenge,” the judges’ statement continued, “that at no time did the Honourable Chief Justice seek then or since, to ‘convince’ fellow judges to change existing security arrangements having regard to the inescapable truth that the issue related to security arrangements was raised at the meeting quite independently by fellow judges as their personal concerns.”

    • Nigel S. Scott Not Christine, Carol…….?? LATT, wasting lawyers fees that could be used productively! Nonsense!

    • Yeah Tonyette, I meant Carol Seegobin… sorry ah was typing on mih phone while being hustled out the door.

      Lasana, admittedly I have not read the statement in full, but my understanding that the purpose was to specifically refute the notion that he sought to pressure other justices to hire the conflicted security company. Therefore, in an ideal world they probably would not have put this out there, but given the anonymous allegations being leaked questioning his integrity, apparently some with particular knowledge of the circumstances tried to clear the air. The onus now is on those lobbing the allegations to have them substantiated. Surely there must be *some* justices who can come forth and support the charges, no? Those hypothetical justices need to also declare their biases/positions on his guilt. In other words, as Rhoda said…. “ALL justices.”

    • Lasana Liburd the whole scenario could have been avoided.
      If I recall, there have been attempts to engage the CJ, which he blatantly refused. And these are not matters that can or should be swept under the carpet. And those asking for answers/account are not naive civilians.
      The court offers mediation services. Why wasn’t that option at least attempted?
      No office in the land, where salaries, resources etc are paid for by the state purse, can/should ignore attempts to ensure accountability and transparency.
      If we say the LATT cannot investigate, what next/then?

    • Nerisha he owes them no answers. They themselves acknowledge as much “The Law Association itself recognizes that it cannot discipline the Chief Justice nor compel him to respond to their correspondence.”

      p. 13, last sentence of second to last paragraph.

    • How long will it take the LATT to acknowledge that it simply has NO locus standi/ no jurisdiction over the CJ? Something so obvious…….I await 10th April, 2018. I agree 100% with your comments on this matter Nigel S. Scott.

  3. I would expect now that we are all awake that these same judges will ALL step up to the plate, admitting that for years they have all been breaking this country’s law. Which of them have declared their assets and liabilities under this country’s Integrity in Public Life Act? No other country in the world would tolerate it. Time to act is now!

  4. According to Mr Daly’s logic, this should go both ways for those who supported and those who did not. How does he get a fair hearing…or seem to get one..

    • Correct except that Mr Daly stops short of saying what yiu Just said. So what else is in the mortar …..?

    • Okay. So anybody who took a public stance AGAINST Archie should also not involved in the case. Nothing is wrong with that. But that still means those judges holding their hands up and recusing themselves.

    • Lasana no one took a public stance, one way or the other so ALL allegiances, pro and con, would have to be declared,

    • Nigel, if as a Judge you said “I think Jack Warner should be extradited”, could you still be given the case involving Warner’s extradition?

    • Lasana not at all. But there has been no such affirmative support for Archie by any one judge.

    • [“It can therefore be without challenge,” the judges’ statement continued, “that at no time did the Honourable Chief Justice seek then or since, to ‘convince’ fellow judges to change existing security arrangements having regard to the inescapable truth that the issue related to security arrangements was raised at the meeting quite independently by fellow judges as their personal concerns.”]
      So you think a Judge who signed this release would have no potential bias in adjudicating over a matter that could involve that issue?
      We each have our own opinion then. And I disagree.

    • It’s two separate issues involved here. Giving the LATT powers to “investigate” and “discipline” judges and Chief Justices is a matter for any judge to adjudicate.

      The matter of the accusations by the LATT is another matter as to who should adjudicate in my humble opinion..

      After reading the reports of Mr Ian Benjamin (for the CJ) and the defence by Hamel-Smith (for the LATT) it was an obvious decision again in my humble opinion…

    • Lasana I understand your disagreement but the two situations you posited are not the same. In the first, a judge who pronounces Jack Warner guilty before having even heard the case on its merits, has shown bias against the defendant which cannot be cured and must recuse. In the case of Archie, none of the justices were passing judgment, or even offering an opinion. If anything they were offering eyewitness testimony to what occurred at the meeting.

    • Nigel, the words “without challenge” and “inescapable truth” doesn’t suggest passing judgment to you?

    • Not in the context Lasana. Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t the statement issued in clarification of what was discussed at the meeting? So if the anonymous judges issued that statement to say that “I was/we were there, and the CJ never suggested that we hire[ X ] to provide security.” How is that passing judgement? Mind you, they’re not opining on the merits of the legal questions, they are affirming a fact.

      Now if you ask me, there are more meritorious grounds for having them recused from sitting on any potential appeal. It is well established that a lawyer (or in this case, a judge) may not appear as a witness in a matter in which that lawyer is also acting as advocate (or judge). So it may be legitimate to ask those willing to testify to identify themselves and then have them be recused, the effect would be the same without improperly ascribing to them bias and inability to do the job.

      All humans have biases, and all judges (on the evidence) are humans. Therefore it stands to reason that all judges, ostensibly, have their own personal biases. A scrupulous judge knows to set aside those biases and to strictly judge the matters before them in their merits. Daly assumes, by his stance, that this is impossible, a position for which only he can account.

    • You had me in agreement for the most part until the last sentence. If we could reasonably expect judges to curb their own biases then the majority of recusals probably won’t happen.

    • Lasana not really many recusals occur not just to avoid conflicts, but to avoid even the appearance of a conflict… or out of an abundance of caution. Here Daly isn’t so much suggesting the latter scenario as much as he’s implying a conflict per se, on account of the public statement.

    • I’d say to avoid the appearance of a conflict myself.

  5. There is something called “Conflict of Interest”. What is so hard to understand?

  6. I want to know how Archie,s wife dealing with this how she is still with that man

  7. Daly has been practising for how long and I am glad that in this case he has seen his way to request the appeal judges to declare if they were among the secret supporters of Archie in the Newsday ad. The larger picture is that we need clear codified rules of rescusal in both pecuniary and non pecuniary interest. Clearly consanguainity, blood relatives to a certain degree. uxorial affinities to take care of spouses inlaws and the like, and the most troublesome friends and even present and past intimates partners without regard to sexuality. Of course if an appeal court judge once owned a building with counsel for the CJ they must disclose.

  8. If FOIA (Friends Of Ivor Archie) hadda reveal themselves, then Carol’s Cabal hadda step up and declare their hand, eh….and I could call names AND whistle.

  9. This is a given. Judges know they should recuse themselves whenever there is a conflict of interest. Why is Daly asking for this or is he up to mischief? Does he not believe in judges’ abilities to do their jobs?

  10. Sooner or later (sooner is my bet) someone will come along to chastise Daly’s character, rather than absorb the content and principle of his message… Never realising that the two are unique and distinct.

  11. What about the judges that aren’t in support of the CJ? Slippery slope.

    • You damn right! Slippery slope indeed!

    • How is it a slippery slope? Would you explain what you mean?

    • Six to one or half a dozen of the other. Therefore, based on your comment decisions of guilty or innocent are determined by many judges way before the matter is called. That is understandable on a small island with a population of less than 2.5 million, judges being humans would be influenced by the media and secretly in their minds would arrive at decisions way advanced of a court hearing. Yes, that slope is very slippery.

  12. Daly is right. This isn’t and can’t be a recusal issue if the judge doesn’t declare his or her interest.

    • Moreover, the local law fraternity is not big. Whether the judge declared it or not, wasn’t this an ‘open secret’?
      In law, the judge may have been entirely correct. But what perception does the public have of the matter and outcome?
      If it is true she is a (albeit distant) relative of one of the attorneys, shouldn’t an objection have been raised, at least if it was known (even if informally) to the other side?
      I wonder what gain all parties hope to accomplish by further eroding trust, confidence in the judicial system. And no, it is not limited to a legal requirement.

    • all judges….every single last one.

  13. “Not only must Justice be done; it must also be seen to be done.”

  14. Absolute nonsense. That is when you know the case fail before it even start.

  15. Is this the same Martin Daly that doesn’t speak about his childhood friendship and best friend Andre Monteil in any of his holier than thou columns? The same Daly who turns a blind eye when it comes to his own friends’ criminality and robbery of the nation?

    Seriously, the society needs to do better than rely on Daly for our moral compass. Yes the CJ is causing all kinds of problems but please spare us Martin Daly as the conscience of the nation. His own moral compass is a broken as the CJ’s.

  16. And is organizing a “soft landing ” for Archie

  17. Arch reminds of Donald Trump. ..Naked power. ..Arch is an honest man like Donald. .This is going to knock down ..drag out fight .Unless as is apparent now…the PM remains too weak to fight

  18. Sir, I commend your observations which had me troubled at times too. Let me here put on record that it is my gut feeling that not one of those judges will respond to the suggestion that I believe is fair and the right thing to do. In this small society, despite corruption is a word we find at every corner, never-the-less with no one able to point a finger at “who” they will refuse and may even sit at the appeal. Corruption is everywhere and no segment of society is immune. I guess that’s the sins of progress!

  19. Lasana Liburd, I am again posting this extract here since it seems relevant to me.
    The issue that Mr. Daly raises is one that I should think most would be in agreement with.
    Before we even reached here, can anyone answer if the judge in the concluded matter is/was a relative of one of the CJs attorneys?
    There is a concept in law, justice must not only be done, but must appear to be done.
    If, in the eyes of the law, the appeal is dismissed, how would the public feel if it is subsequently disclosed that judge/s hearing the appeal were CJs sympathisers?
    It appears we keep trying to fit and hinge all the logic on legal requirements, when there (still) remains moral and ethical concerns.
    BTW, that is a specialisation in law (maybe not in the Commonwealth?).

  20. Senior counsel talking about secret judge pals…

  21. Well written Mr. Daly always thoroughly enjoy reading your articles.

  22. I humbly disagree with Martin Daly SC. There’s a procedure for recusal if a judge believes there’s an appearance of bias or otherwise. Once there’s not been a recusal, the judge has to be assumed to be impartial. There s no need for declaring one’s hand.

    • But do you follow his point at all?

    • I just checked and the word “recusal” was not used even once in that statement.

    • Lasana Liburd yes I do. However he’s assuming that judges will not act honourably. I’m saying that if a judge is biased or perceived to be biased in some way, the judge will recuse himself or herself from hearing a case. The judge does not have to declare any hand.

      • I am curiouys… if a judge supported the CJ but does not declare it, can you still say that judge is impartial?

        Your statement makes about as much sense as a top spinning in wet cement. But you will need to think much more deeply to the the reality.

        To help you, I have two words… Sherman McNicolls.

    • Hayden Anthony Alexander thank you!!!!!! One cannot start or attempt a discussion, especially where you are presenting yourself as objective with such already biased sentiments. And further I guess that we should find judges who we know don’t support the CJ. Martin could have done himself well not writing this

    • Any lawyer representing the LATT is entitled to raise as a preliminary concern based on the anonymity of the advertisement that a real potential for bias existed, whether real or perceived.
      It would then be left up the judges to either recuse themselves or to proceed with the hearing of the appeal. There’s nothing impudent or unusual about that.

    • Justin thanks. I’d think so. Imagine if there was a big case against the Freemasons or something. Would it be improper to ask judges to say whether they are members or not?
      I think that would be proper myself.

    • Lasana Liburd , I recall seeing that ad and at the time finding it inappropriate.Plus no names were attached to it.I would be curious to know who were the persons behind it and think Martin Daly’s concerns are legitimate ones.

    • Lasana Liburd that would not be proper. The judges would either recuse themselves or a lawyer can raise the matter as Justin said. So there are procedures already in place.

    • Hayden do attorneys sometimes ask judges to recuse themselves? And sometimes their request is successful?

    • Marcia Ayers-Ceasar, then chief magistrate, was asked by an attorney representing Rajae Ali and others to recuse herself because of perceived bias. It was argued then that police officers from a particular unit provided her security escort and officers of the said unit(not necessarily the same officers) were witnesses in the same matter. To negate the perception of bias she promptly recused herself and allowed another magistrate to proceed with the matter. There’s no need for proof beyond that it is likely to be perceived as bias.

    • Thanks Justin. And my follow up for Hayden is that without knowing who Archie’s supporters are, it is impossible for lawyers representing either party to take those same safeguards.
      For instance, suppose Archie won and information came to light thereafter that the Judge had already taken a public position on the matter?
      A re-trial hurts everyone. It is either you want justice or not.

    • Lasana Liburd so judges either fall into two categories then. Those who support Archie and those who don’t?? I don’t see this as an Archie issue. it is a matter of law on whether the LATT has jurisdiction to investigate judges. As far as I know, the ad taken out by the judges indicated that Archie never tried to influence them to change their security, which was one of the allegations being made. We also see communications from other judges in the public domain, Gobin, Seepersad and Boodoosingh, but mostly Gobin indicate their stance as well. Do we know what other communication has gone on in the judiciary or elsewhere? As such, in this case, we are going to have to trust that whoever the three appeal judges are, that they act honourably, cause that’s what we do anyway. Asking for judges to declare their hand is opening up a Pandora’s box that will lead people to call for the same for other cases. Because we don’t know how the three appeal court judges who decided the Election Petitions case voted. Should we have asked them to declare their hand as well? Come nah man. In an attempt to get one man, people don’t seem to care how they destroy the whole institution.

    • Hayden Anthony Alexander And that HAA is the crux of the matter. The FACT that some in the LATT, in their attempt to remove one man, will bring the whole institution down in its head.

    • Hayden Anthony Alexander Deep thinking…..

    • Visel George Not only the LATT, the very Judiciary, itself…..

    • Hayden is spot on. Obviously (to most) I don’t practice locally, but the standard across most developed countries is the same. Daly’s error is one of presumption of bias. In doing so he impugns the collective integrity of the judiciary in the process. He doesn’t mention “recusal” in the article because such an obvious prophylactic measure undercuts the thrust of his opinion that the threat is sufficiently extraordinary as to warrant extraordinary measures.