…welcomes court case filed by suspended PSC
The case filed by suspended head of the Police Service Commission (PSC) challenging the suspension by President Dr Irfaan Ali has been welcomed by Attorney General Anil Nandlall, SC, who has asserted that it is the legal right of those who have been suspended to contest their suspension in the courts.
During his weekly programme “Issues in the News”, Nandlall said, “That is a right that they [PSC] have, and that is a right that I respect. I anticipated that they will go this route, and it is their democratic and legal right to do so.”
He was keen to note that if one wishes to challenge a decision made by a public officer, moreso the President, then one should do so through the courts.
The Attorney General pointed out that the Chairman of the PSC, retired Assistant Commissioner of Police Paul Slowe, and his team must recognise that, at least when the PPP/C is in Government, the Constitution and the rule of law will be respected.
He added, “And when the President makes a decision, and when a Minister makes a decision, whether he is right or whether he is wrong in law is a matter for only the court to decide. However, the rule of law requires and demands that you respect that decision until it is rescinded by a competent authority.”
Following Chief Justice Roxane George’s dismissal of the cases filed by Senior Superintendent of Police Calvin Brutus and other senior officers, challenging the 2020 senior Police promotions, the suspended PSC has released its promotions list, which the Government has refused to recognise, and in doing so, has deemed it “unlawful and illegal.”
“So when Mr Slowe and his team were writing the Secretary to the Commission, instructing him to proceed with this promotion list that they have assembled; and when Mr Slowe was writing the Commissioner of Police, instructing him to proceed to promote a list of officers… they were completely wrong, and their demands were completely unlawful and were properly and rightfully ignored,” Nandlall noted.
The Attorney General had previously made it clear that nothing in the ruling rendered by the Chief Justice gives legitimacy to the purported list of promotions issued by the PSC.
The PSC’s legal action is against President Ali, Prime Minister Mark Phillips, Nandlall, Police Commissioner Nigel Hoppie, and its secretary over the suspension of its Chairman and Commissioners Michael Somersall, Claire Jarvis, Vesta Adams, and Clinton Conway – all retired Assistant Commissioners of Police.
In court documents filed at the Demerara High Court, the defunct PSC is seeking a number of orders and declarations, among which is a declaration that the suspension of its Chairman and Commissioners violates the Constitution of Guyana, and is therefore of no force or effect.