By Abena Rockcliffe-Campbell
The same cadre of lawyers who filed the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) appeal to the local Appellate Court’s ruling that the December 21 No-Confidence Motion was not validly passed, are also petitioning the CCJ for an order preventing sittings of the National Assembly until a final ruling is made on the matter as to what constitutes a majority for a No-Confidence Motion.
This was confirmed moments ago by Sanjeev Datadin who is one of the lawyers on the team.
Datadin told the Guyana Standard that the application was filed today. He said that it was filed within the consolidated appeal to be heard by the CJJ on May 9 and 10.
However, the CCJ is expected to respond to the specific application before Friday. Datadin said that the matter should be handled expeditiously.
The lawyer told the Guyana Standard that ever since December, 21, the two sides—government and opposition—have been disagreeing on whether government fell.
He said that no sitting should be had until that matter is finally settled.
“While it is being determined (whether the government has fallen), the rule of law steps in; and the rule of law is that the National Assembly should not meet unless it is for a matter that is deemed urgent and necessary, like a war or so.”
Datadin said that there is obviously no war, and the government did not even put matters relating to the Guyana Elections Commission’s (GECOM) needed financing on the agenda. Instead, the Order Paper indicates that the National Assembly is set to address tax release for oil companies.
Datadin said that the lawyers involved in the case view it as patriotic to ensure that Friday’s sitting does not happen. He said that this is mainly because matters relating to the oil sector are deemed very important and should not only benefit from the views of one side of the House.
Datadin said, “Whatever we are doing should be done by the entire National Assembly. Economically speaking, oil is the most important thing in Guyana and will be for the next 50 years. While the court is deciding on the No-Confidence Motion, no side should seek to take advantage.”
Datadin said that lawyers spoke today with officials at the CCJ “but they refused to comment on the matter because, of course, once the application is filed, they will now have to respond.”