Saturday, September 22, 2012

Justice Marshall Petition on Khaiyum Cited in Chaudhry Case Stay Application

"The fact is that the Attorney General completed the removal of judicial independence in Fiji in April 2012.  The judges no longer do their duty and do not serve the people of Fiji.  They do what they believe the Attorney General would wish them to do.  In many cases this is specifically explained to them by or on behalf of the Attorney General. 
Some judges have been doing this since 2010 since they are used to the executive telling the judges what to do.  Others have started doing it in April 2012 because they know that if they do not do what the Attorney General desires they will be dismissed." (Justice Marshall Petition)

Labour Party Leader Mahendra Chaudhry (left), and lawyer Rajen Chaudhry outside the Suva courts yesterday. Photo: NAVNEET NARAYAN

Fiji Sun News

Defence counsel for Labour leader Mahendra Pal Chaudhry is expected to file an application for permanent stay on foreign currency control breach allegation against him.

Appearing before Judge Justice Paul Madigan, in the High Court, Suva, defence lawyer Rajend Chaudhry informed the court that the defence wished to make further application for a permanent stay of proceedings in light of certain issues raised by very senior persons.

Mr Chaudhry said the defence needed 28 days to make an application for a permanent stay because the facts gave rise to one. He told Justice Madigan that former Fiji Court of Appeal judge Justice William Marshall QC had written a petition to the Prime Minister which had serious allegations, adding that it was before the Military Council.
Mr Chaudhry said the petition included claims by Justice Marshall of executive interference in court processes. He said this had raised the concerns of his client.
The court heard that defence counsel was on instructions to refer the petition and further instructions from the court to Peter Williams QC for perusal before they make an application for permanent stay.
Mr Chaudhry said defence was expected to send the petition to Mr Williams, who is in New Zealand, by September 28 and would receive appropriate advice by email.

Justice Madigan mentioned that he found no reason that Chaudhry should not be given time to file an application, after which he gave defence 28days to make an application for a permanent stay. In granting Chaudhry leave of the court to make the application, Justice Madigan stressed that the issue was not of time constraint for defence to make further applications.
However, it was of the fact that the case had been before the court for a long time and it had to be dealt with in the public’s interest. Chaudhry had denied three counts of breaches of the Exchange Control Act. These charges allege a failure to surrender foreign currency; dealing in foreign currency and a failure to collect debts, all without the consent of the Governor of the Reserve Bank of Fiji and in contravention of the Exchange Control Act. Click here for Justice Marshall Petition

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