Opposition Senator Wade Mark said the Government’s closure of bars during the covid19 pandemic could amount to a breach of the owners’ constitutional rights to enjoyment of their private property.
He spoke during Friday’s extraordinary sitting of the Senate on the Miscellaneous Provisions (2019 Novel Coronavirus [2019-nCoV]) Bill 2020.
“Every citizen has the right to enjoyment of property,” he said.
Mark said the Constitution also gives citizens the right to assembly and freedom of assembly.
He did not think the Health Minister had any legal right to curtail business activities and advised that owners might challenge any curtailment in a law court.
Mark urged the Senate debate with equity, transparency and accountability. He asked why bars are being shut to avoid people congregating, but not malls, churches and fast-food outlets. Opposition Senator Saddam Hosein also asked about constitutional rights.