Categorized | National News

Smith Threatens Further Action Against Mitchell

Council for the Save the Bays Organization Fred Smith says that he is very close to filing a motion to hold Foreign Affairs Minister Fred Mitchell in contempt of court.

Smith, who was arguing during an injunction hearing to prohibit Parliamentarians from sharing personal e-mails of Save the Bay members in the House of Parliament, says Mr. Mitchell is taking a different position in public during live broadcasts of house meetings than his lawyers are taking in court.

He says those lawyers acknowledge the powers of the judiciary and that it demands mutual respect from the other two branches of government.

“While council is acting for Minister Fred Mitchell and acknowledging the supremacy of the constitution and the power, authority and jurisdiction of the court to adjudicate on the matters in this case, Mr. Mitchell is proclaiming at the same time as he did last night that he is going to continue to say what he wants to say, he doesn’t care what this court orders and he will ignore any order by the court,” Mr. Smith said.

Smith says that Minister for Foreign Affairs Fred Mitchell cannot continue to play both sides of the fence.

“I don’t know whether I should ask for an adjournment and apply to an issue of motion to have Mr. Mitchell cited for contempt, this is a new situation in 40 years I’ve never been faced with this in terms of constitutional matters where one of the parties have accepted the court’s jurisdiction entered an appearance but continues to defy the process, Minister Mitchell can’t have his cake and eat it too,” Mr. Smith said.

Smith also noted the Parliamentary Privilege invoked by the ministers was designed to protect parliament as a whole opposed to individual members.

“Although there is a protection afforded to those members of parliament it does not put members of parliament in a class alone, they are still subject to the laws of the land, if members of parliament can be prosecuted for matters that occurred in parliament so to can they be challenged for breeches of the constitution,” Mr. Smith said.

The matter continues today before Justice Indra Charles.






Written by Jones Bahamas

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