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Thursday 20 June 2019
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AG: UNC did not maintain courts

Faris Al-Rawi
Faris Al-Rawi

ATTORNEY General Faris Al-Rawi says while the previous administration built new courts they did not maintain them.

He said that in 2013, under the UNC, the buildings, operations and facilities operation in the Judiciary was removed and resulted in the crumbling of the plant and machinery in the judiciary.

“In 2013 the UNC government proposed that they would be constructing new courts and there was no investment in repairs, maintenance cycles of the judiciary.” He said it is Parliament’’s obligation to ensure this was done properly.

“Unfortunately that was not the case.

This government has had to pick up the pieces.” Al-Rawi said since the Law Association’s letter of June 29, problems with the air conditioning and plumbing were dealt with and fibre and asbestos at the San Fernando Magistrates’ Court are being “aggressively managed.”

Al-Rawi said this work was being done on the back of an improved facilities unit and buildings committee which government set up via an inter ministerial committee comprising people from the Works Ministry, Finance Ministry and Office of the Attorney General.

He also reported there was a note before Cabinet seeking to broaden the purview of the Judicial and Legal Services Commission to allow the appointment of important office holders who may not be lawyers.

Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar asked about the readiness of the court for this system.

She said there were problems in the San Fernando Magistrates’ Court and the Princes Town Magistrates’ Court was being run out of a police station.

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