Home News Miner claims Mahdia Magistrate’s Court being built on his leased lands
An East Coast Demerara (ECD) miner, who claims that the Mahdia Magistrate’s Court is being constructed on lands which he holds the mining claims to, has threatened to take legal actions if works are not ceased immediately.
Royston Stuart of 70 Ann’s Grove Housing Scheme, ECD, is the holder of Claim Licence, dated September 2, 2016, issued under the authority of the Mining Act 1989 and the Mining Regulations by the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) in respect to a certain tract of State land in Mining District Number 2.
Despite that Claim Licence being valid and subsisting, Stuart alleged that without his permission, lease, let or license, a group of men, unknown to him, have entered upon a part of the land allotted to him in the Claim Licence and have begun the construction of a building that is intended to be used to house the Mahdia Magistrate’s Court.
As such, the miner has sought the help of former Attorney General, Anil Nandlall to get the authorities to cease construction.
“Unless the construction works… cease forthwith, and all structures constructed be demolished and removed from our client’s land within seven (7) days from the date hereof, we will have no alternative but to approach the High Court for a number of legal redress including injunctions and damages for trespass,” a letter from Nandlall to the Registrar of the Supreme Court, Sueann Lovell, states.
The letter, dated March 22, 2019, was also copied to the acting Chancellor of the Judiciary, Justice Yonette Cummings-Edwards; acting Chief Justice Roxanne George; and Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman as well as Junior Natural Resources Minister, Simona Broomes.
The lawyer pointed out in the letter, which was shared with the media, that his client had previously lodged a complaint with the GGMC since 2017 and as a result, a Mines Officer of the Commission has informed those conducting the construction that it was being done on Stuart’s Licenced Claim and that the works must cease. However, according to Attorney Nandlall, these instructions have been ignored.
He added too that Stuart had also filed a complaint in writing on January 17, 2019, with both Natural Resources Ministers, Raphael Trotman and Simona Broomes. But again, it appears as though those complaints were made in vain because the unlawful construction continues unabated.
“We sincerely hope that unnecessary litigation can be avoided and that good sense will prevail. I respectfully await your urgent response,” Nandlall stated in the letter.
As of Tuesday’s date, when the correspondence was shared with the media, no contact was made with Stuart’s lawyer.
The Mahdia Magistrate’s Court is being constructed in Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni) to the cost of $140.385 million. The construction of the court comes under provisions made available to the Supreme Court to fund its 2019 work programmes.
The Chancellor had said last year that the Mahdia court is among several District Court offices expected to open and will see regular sittings of the court and the availability of centralised services.