(CMR) The decision yesterday to call an early election may be met with a legal challenge by way of judicial review sources familiar with the situation have shared.
CMR can confirm that lawyers have been retained to assess and advise on the way forward after close legal analysis. The parties have shared that after close examination and legal advice they will make a final decision about how to proceed and potentially action could be taken as early as next week.
In other responses to yesterday's announcement, the Official Opposition has shared that they are welcoming the news that an early election will be called because they believe it ultimately will not benefit the incumbencies and the voters are likely to favor a change from the current Unity Government.
Their statement shared that “The Official Opposition members believe that the 14th April election will be a referendum on decency and accountability, both of which have been in short supply by the Government.”
Arden McLean, Leader of the Opposition, said:
“We welcome the Premier's acknowledgment that he has no control over his Government – a Government which is obviously united in its lack of respect for the peoples’ interests. The early election on 14th April will be a referendum on decency and accountability, both of which have been in short supply by this Government. This unprecedented move is nothing more than a hasty response by the Government to sidestep our further efforts to have the contentious issue of whether to remove the current Speaker of the House addressed decisively by Parliament. The Speaker of the House is one of the highest elected offices in our democracy. For his 11 Government colleagues to remain silent in the face of his criminal conviction for violence against a woman is beyond reprehensible.
The fact that the victim was a young woman who moved to our beautiful Islands makes the situation even worse considering that many of us have mothers, daughters, granddaughters, aunts and other female relatives who often move away for educational or employment purposes. The worry that they might become victims of a vicious drunken beating by a senior member of Government would be the least of our fears. Yet, if such a dreadful thing were to come to pass we would rightly expect there to be some level of accountability.
The Premier is also the Minister for Gender Affairs. This lack of response calls into question whether he even understands the responsibility associated with this Ministry.”
Mr. McLean concluded:
This entire incident could have been prevented if the Premier had taken the appropriate action when Speaker Bush was arrested in July 2017 for the battery of another female worker in a Florida casino. At what point do we say enough is enough?
We are confident that there is a vast majority of decent people out there, decent people who will use this election to send a clear message that perpetrators of violence against women, and their conspicuously silent accomplices will be held to account.
As Martin Luther King so eloquently said, “The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.”
Decency still matters!!”