We have a right to appeal and we are exercising that right – says Premier Parry

Premier of Nevis, Hon. Joseph Parry
Premier of Nevis, Hon. Joseph Parry
Charlestown, Nevis (Wednesday, March 28, 2012)–  Premier, the Hon. Joseph Parry has indicated that it is his Nevis Reformation Party’s democratic right to appeal part of the five-order decision handed down by Justice Lionel Jones in the Election Petition case on Wednesday, March 21.

According to Premier Parry, who was at the time speaking on his weekly In Touch With the Premier radio programme aired on Choice 105.3 FM on Tuesday, March 27, his party has appealed on the first and fourth orders of the five-order judgment handed down by Justice Jones.

Premier Parry told his listeners that while members of the opposition Concerned Citizens Movement (CCM) are suggesting that the NRP should not appeal, he reminded that the NRP has a right to appeal “and we are exercising that right,” terming the CCM’s actions as being “deceptive, mischievous, and naturally malicious.”

“I want to say that the seat does not belong to Mark Brantley, as he is already claiming,” said Premier Parry in his opening remarks. “He (Brantley) is very presumptuous to think that the seat belongs to him.”

He reminded the listeners that his government constituted a Commission of Inquiry on Nevis, and the leader of the CCM, Hon Vance Amory appealed. He lost the matter in Court on all 15 counts, and instead of letting the Commission of Inquiry proceed, he went ahead and appealed that decision. “We did not say he did not have the right to appeal anyway, because we thought that was his democratic right to appeal,” said Premier Parry.

“I hope everybody remembers that, because now the story (by CCM) is this: that why appeal when you can go back to the polls, because if you appeal it costs the Government money,” commented the Premier. “If you go to the polls it will cost the Government money anyway. So I hope we realize that, and I hope we realize the argument is basically shallow, frivolous and totally unnecessary being advanced by people who are seeking to be deceptive, mischievous, and naturally malicious.”

Commenting on the five orders handed down by Justice Jones, the Premier said that the NRP  had appealed on the first order which read: ‘The Nevis Island Assembly Election for the Constituency of Nevis 2 (Parish of St. John) held on the 11th day of July 2011 is hereby declared invalid and void.”

The NRP also appealed on the fourth order: “I declare that the petitioner’s right to freedom of expression and his right not to be treated in a discriminatory manner by reason of his political opinions guaranteed under sections 12 and 15 of the Constitution of Saint Christopher and Nevis have been contravened by the failure of the Nevis Island Administration on its nightly Nevis News Cast to cover any of the political events organized by the Petitioner’s political party during the campaign leading up to the election of July 11, 2011.”

“I won’t really make too much fuss about order four,” advised the Premier. “The Petitioner never asked Nevis News Cast (NNC) to cover his political meetings. I do not know if NNC is in the habit of covering political meetings; that is not my knowledge of NNC anyway. I hope some person or persons will provide the funds and the staff if the NNC will have to be covering political meetings.”

The second and third orders in Justice Jones’ decision did not favor the prayers of the Petitioner, one of which had explicitly asked the Judge to order that names of persons removed from the voters’ list to be returned. Since the Judgment the Petitioner (Mark Brantley) citing the Judge in his ruling has, however, said publicly on radio, that the names were never removed and that the action of removing some of the names was deemed null and void.

“The business of hypocrisy has seemed to become part of the practice of the day and some people have become masters at it, and been able to confuse themselves and to confuse others as well,” commented the Premier. “I understand that the Hon Mark Brantley is now saying that the names were never removed from the list.”

Reading the Judge’s third order which stated: ‘The order sought that the Court should order that the names of the voters who were unlawfully removed from the list be restored is refused’,  Premier Parry said “I do not want to get into a definition of words this morning. I am quite sure we are above that, but anybody who has heard this order would ask the question if the names have been asked to be restored to the list, and this was part of the prayer of the Petitioner, what was he asking to be restored? Were it not the names which were removed?”

According to Premier Parry, the action taken by the Nevis Reformation Party is a democratic process where one has the right to appeal. “That is basically what is happening here,” he pointed out. He added that where the appeal lodged by Hon. Vance Amory on the Commission of Inquiry is concerned , “As much as we want to do things, we have to wait for that decision to be handed down.”

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