Turks and Caicos Sun
Thursday, Aug 13, 2009
Former Premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands says he will continue to fight on to clear his name and to agitate for the human rights and human dignity of the the people. Responding to the dismissal of his case by the Court of Appeal in London on Wednesday, Hon. Misick said: “There was a miscarriage of justice that took place for the people of the Turks and Caicos in particular and all the people of remaining colonies in general.”
He noted that one of the Lordships that heard the appeal today in the Court of Appeal was the original judge that denied the appeal from the Divisional Court, namely Lord Justice Laws, adding that this can not be right or fair. He further noted that one of their Lordships stated that the British Government can do anything it wants to its Colonies regardless of the European Convention on Human Rights and the Human Rights Act other than re-introduce slavery.
“It is unfortunate that the thinking in London has not change in 200 years. As a result of today’s ruling and what I believe to be a rigged hearing by the English court and the FCO, it is evident that they intend to rig a criminal trial and conviction against me and my former Ministers,” the former Premier stated.
“In spite all of this, I intend to continue the fight to clear my name and to fight for the Human Rights and Human Dignity of all our people.”
Hon. Misick had challenged the legality of The Turks and Caicos Islands Constitution (Interim Amendment) Order 2009” [“the Order in Council”], which was laid before the UK Parliament on 25th March 2009.
The Order was made following the publication of Sir Robin Auld’s interim report relating to the Commission of Inquiry set up to inquire into possible corruption or other serious dishonesty in recent years of past and present elected members of the legislature. The Order in Council, when brought into force, will suspend parts of the Turks and Caicos Islands’ Constitution.
In summary, it will abolish the right to jury trial and it will suspend representative government by dissolving the House of Assembly and removing all elected officials, for a period of at least two years.
In the place of representative government will be a system of administration by the Governor, subject only to advice from an Advisory Council and to disallowance by the Secretary of State.
However, the former premier who has been credited with the unprecedented growth that the country experienced over the past five years before its sudden halt claimed that the move breaches human rights laws. According to Hon. Misick, if allowed to take place, the Order would essentially deny the people of the country of elected parliamentary representation, noting also that it would take away the rights of persons being tried in a court of law.
Such scrapping of fundamental rights, according to the ex-premier, is worthy of fighting for, and as a result has embarked on a legal campaign to block such move by the United Kingdom Government.
Hon. Misick, who catapulted to the head of the country’s leadership in 2003, after triumphing in two by-elections, evolved from Chief Minister status to Premier in 2006, after successfully arguing his United Kingdom counterparts for modernisation of the country’s constitutional periphery.
With the country’s constitutional advancement also came two additional electoral boundaries and the changing of the parliamentary title from the Legislative Council (Legco) to the House of Assembly.
He believes that should the United Kingdom gain full control once again of the Turks and Caicos Islands, those achievements would be eroded, and as a result, expressed his determination to fight the Order.