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CBA - Concerned Bahamians Abroad

A non-profit foundation - Executive Director, Calvin Turnquest - Board Chairman, Dr. Harlington L. Hanna Jr.

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Separation of Powers Problems Affecting the Bahamas International Reputation

  • Public
By CBA - Concerned Bahamians Abroad 2970 days ago

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Bahamian Government Cabinet Members and the Speaker of the House of Assembly recently apposed an Injunction ordered by a Supreme Court Justice which would prevent Parliament from using its Rules of Parliamentary Privilege to introduce information obtained from private emails in its Parliamentary discussions.

The issue arose from earlier Parliamentary submissions of private email information obtained by a Government Cabinet Minister and member of Parliament attempting to show improprieties on the part of a Lyford Cay Resident to refute allegations of corruption by Government leaders. The dispute originated between two powerful foreign Lyford Cay Residents, with Government parliamentary members being implicated on one side. The Judge issued an injunction against Parliamentarians using Parliament Privilege to reveal such private information in their public deliberations.

Government Parliamentarians and Cabinet Minister Members of Parliament including the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education then introduced a parliamentary resolution to bring the Judge and the two Lawyers who petitioned the Court, to appear before Parliament to question their actions. The Bahamas Bar Association and others have declared that such a parliamentary move would seriously challenge the Doctrine of Separation of Powers in the Bahamas, and put the Country's international reputation at risk.

Meanwhile some Government Parliamentarians claim that it is the Judge, the lawyers and their foreign client who are trying to undermine the Government, the Country, and its Doctrine of Separation of Powers. This is a somewhat strange position in that it is universally recognized that it is the Court who ultimately decides on the constitutionality of Parliamentary actions.

The Council for Concerned Bahamians Abroad (CBA) in prior Analytical Reports has detailed the inherent weakness of the practice of Separation of Powers within the Westminster System of government, and the Bahamas in particular.

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