Basseterre, St. Kitts, July 02, 2019 (SKNIS): The judicial system plays a vital role in promoting democracy and justice in the Federation and in the sub-region. Against this backdrop, the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis continues to give strong support to an independent and efficient judiciary.
“There is strong support for the judiciary by my administration and we have consistently been lauded by judicial officials for our support,” said Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, during his press conference on Tuesday, July 02.
Prime Minister Harris said that a lot has been done to enhance the criminal justice system in St. Kitts and Nevis.
“We have received support to strengthen our criminal justice system. We now have three sitting judges in our Federation rather that two – two in Basseterre, one in Nevis. The matters are being dealt with more quickly by the system as a result,” said Prime Minister Harris.” The assizes systems as we once knew it, I am advised is now brought to an end and the High Court is literally on call to deal with criminal and civil matters five days a week. Indeed, interestingly, I am advised that the court is called in sessions on Saturdays too as required. Justice then in our country is being dispensed.”
Important to note is Kitts and Nevis’s exceptional ranking relating to matters of justice on the World Justice Project Rule of Law for 2017.
“We rank number one in the OECS [Organization of Eastern Caribbean States], the best performing country in the OECS. We rank 30 of over 100 plus countries in the world and on several indicators. We were the best performing not just in the region but in the entire world,” said Dr. Harris. “These are the facts which speak eloquently to good governance. Good governance at the basic level is about accountability—the electorate being able to hold you accountable and everywhere we have been doing that.”
In May 2019, during the opening ceremony for the Judicial Education Institute’s annual Judicial Conference 2019 and the Magistrates’ Conference 2019 at the St. Kitts Marriott Resort, Chief Justice of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC), Her Ladyship Dame Janice Pereira, publicly acknowledged the continued support of St. Kitts and Nevis for the Judiciary. She noted that the “Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court has always enjoyed great support from the Government and people of St. Kitts and Nevis in its training programmes, as well as for court reform initiatives.”