I would replace the attorney general

Monday, April 15, 2019

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Dear Editor,

Section 79 of the Jamaican Constitution describes the role of the attorney general as “the principal legal adviser of the government”. Such an appointment therefore, although political, is also professional, so the attorney general should not be influenced by political considerations in giving legal opinions.

Attorney General Marlene Malahoo Forte does not have a stellar report card.

The attorney general seems not to have correctly advised the Government on the constitutionality of the zones of special operations plans; matters surrounding the non-disclosure agreement sign in the Petrojam saga; and has now caused some embarrassment to the Government in the National Identification and Registration Act that establishes the controversial national identification system (NIDS) that was struck down as unconstitutional when Chief Justice Bryan Sykes declared that the court had decided that the legislation had no legal effect and is to be removed from the statutes of Jamaica.

As the attorney general Malahoo Forte functions as the “head of the Bar”, with specific responsibility for proper regulation of the legal profession in Jamaica and the delivery of legal education across the Caribbean ( You and the Law, August 20, 2018). One now questions how well she has executed such duties.

Were I prime minister I would replace her.

Dudley C McLean II

Mandeville, Manchester

dm15094@gmail.com


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