Boundary Change Injunction Back In Effect LK Hewlett Story Updated: January 30th 2015 at 1:54 pm
The government and election officials are prohibited from taking any actions on “new boundaries” until the court can hear the Opposition’s injunction appeal against boundary changes. That is the latest pronouncement by the court on whether the February 16 elections are proceeding on re-aligned constituency boundaries or the boundaries that were in place prior to the dissolution of Parliament on January 16. High court judge Justice Marlene Carter on Tuesday allowed the government’s application to have the January 16 injunction against the government and Attorney General discharged. Legal counsel for the opposition, Douglas Mendes SC, applied to appeal her decision. He also, on behalf of lead counsel in the case, SC Chris Hamel-Smith, applied for the Electoral Commission and Supervisor of Election to be added to the injunction or a separate injunction be imposed to restrain them from acting on the boundaries change proclamation. He asked that she re-instate the injunction until a hearing could be conducted. Justice Carter refused to extend the injunction she had just discharged. On Wednesday the Court of Appeal notified it would convene a teleconference hearing on Thursday morning to hear the opposition’s appeal. The various lawyers were scattered around the globe as they made oral submissions via the internet. The hearing began around 10am and at 6pm, the Court of Appeal handed down a ruling. “The justice of the case merits the grant of an interim injunction pending the hearing and determination of the appeal.” The appeal hearing is set for February 9 in St. Vincent. Government lawyer Lord Peter Goldsmith has indicated he will file an appeal with the Privy Council. Opposition attorney Vincent Byron Jr told The Observer that the matter is not finished. “What they have done is brought us back down to earth. The Court of Appeals wants to maintain the status quo until they can make a final decision. “We have gotten a victory today but it is not the end of the war. One has to be very careful, because you never can tell with the court, but I think that today was a great day for us. We feel good, but it is not the end of the road,” he said. PAM candidate Lindsay Grant said at a Team Unity public meeting Thursday night that ‘today the law has spoken and spoken loudly”. “Justice will win in St. Kitts and Nevis. We are going to be very limited about the things we say on the matter because the matter is still going on in the court.” SKN Labour candidate Marcella Liburd told party supporters “be not discouraged or dismayed” because the fight was not over. Meanwhile the continual court action following the events of January 16 has a growing portion of the electorate confused as to the true position on the boundaries. “Injunction een, injunction out, injunction een again. Unity say we going on the old boundaries; Labour say is the new boundaries we working with. I can’t take this. I just want the court to say what is what because election is two weeks away and the people need to know who they voting for,” one voter expressed.