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Paradise Found Case Head to Privy Council

(By Anaya Summers)

The fight by two Barbudans to have a controversial law, which seeks to amend critical sections of the Barbuda Land Act, declared null and void, will be determined by the country’s final appellate court- the Privy Council.

Member of Parliament for Barbuda Trevor Walker told a local radio programme Thursday that legal papers are now being filed to push the matter to the next stage.

The legal challenged by, Leader of the Barbuda People’s Movement (BPM) Trevor Walker and longstanding BPM member Mackenzie Frank, was  initially filed against the government in 2015 shortly after the Antigua and Barbuda Party Regime passed the Paradise Fount Act which overrides certain sections of the Barbuda Land ACT which speaks to ownership of the lands on the sister island.

The claimants, Walker and Frank, contended that the act was unconstitutional as lands on the sister island are owned in common by Barbudans.

During that same period the government lost in its bid to have the application struck out in the courts, the matter was then forwarded to the Eastern Caribbean Court of Appeal after the Barbudans appealed the initial ruling.

However, in late June 2020 the ECSC handing down a ruling in favour of the government.

The Barbudans had given an indication then, that the fight to keep the lands would be taken to the next stage.

As explained by Walker, “We are going to file for leave, we are going to get this thing done, we are going to allow the Privy Council which is our final court in our jurisprudence to decide on this matter which has a lot of implications.”

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