Legal action filed against PM, AG over state of emergency

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Twenty-one people are suing the prime minister and attorney general for damages, claiming that the state of emergency and emergency orders have breached their constitutional rights.

The writ, filed by Attorney Wayne Munroe on Tuesday, seeks declarations that there was no state of emergency within the meaning and contemplation of Article 29 of the constitution, in The Bahamas or on every island of The Bahamas, at the time the proclamation was made by the governor-general or when the state of emergency was extended by Parliament.

Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis, in his capacity as the competent authority, and Attorney General Carl Bethel, have been named as the defendants.

The writ notes that the action by the prime minister “in purporting to create offences for breaching the orders made by him and purporting to create an arrestable offence for breaching said order were done by the [prime minister] without jurisdiction and authority”.

The suit is seeking court orders quashing the criminal complaints and convictions against the plaintiffs found breaching the COVID-19 emergency orders.

 

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