CELEBRATING THE PAST, EMBRACING THE FUTURE: The Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court at Fifty, 1967-2017
By Justice Don Mitchell (Ret)
Chief Justice’s address – Opening of the Law Year 2016 – 2017 | The movement towards an accessible court
It is good to be “home” and to see the familiar faces in the place where Lady Rawlins and I resided for about a decade. We hold many fond memories. Above all, however, we will forever cherish the moments when we sat with Sir Vincent and Lady Floissac particularly after the onset of their illnesses.
Another year has swiftly gone by bringing us to yet another opening of the Law year, this time for 2015-2016. Our rotation through the islands has this year brought us to the beautiful “Spice Isle” of the Caribbean – Grenada, where this address is being broadcast to the other Member States and Territories live via simulcast.
Our Court holds in high regard its role as the bastion for the promotion and protection of the fundamental rights and freedoms held by every person in our society, from the youngest child to the oldest adult. When these fundamental rights and freedoms are threatened or violated society is negatively impacted. The Court is the avenue through which redress is obtained and balance is restored in society.
In setting the stage for our discussions on the far ranging topics to be covered over the three-day period of this Conference, I consider that a fitting focus point is on “The Registry as the Gateway of the Court”. In using the term ‘Registry’ here, I speak only of the Registries as ‘Court Offices’.
I am deeply elated to join with so many others to offer my congratulations to you on this great achievement. I am that much more overjoyed to be offering these words of congratulations and well wishes being myself a graduate of the Norman Manley Law School. You have reached another milestone in your life’s journey …
In many of the States and Territories, we have seen a gradual divesting of the multitude of responsibilities from the Registrar of the Supreme Court. Many have removed the responsibilities for land, companies, intellectual property and civil status from the office of the Registrar…
The Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court congratulates Mr. Paul Dennis of O’Neal Webster, Mr. John Carrington of Mc W Todman & Co., and Mr. Michael Fay of the Ogier Group, all from the Territory of the Virgin Islands, for having been elevated to the rank of Queen’s Counsel.
I would like to warmly welcome you all to this opening of the Law Year 2012-2013 which is being carried live via simulcast to the neighboring Member States and Territories of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court. I am honored; and I thank you sincerely for your presence.