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Tribunal to hear appeals related to state of emergency

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

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JUSTICE Minister Delroy Chuck says an emergency review tribunal will be established shortly to hear and consider appeals by persons who have been affected by the state of public emergency that has been declared for the parish of St James.

The tribunal will adjudicate on appeals brought by or on behalf of persons who have been detained under the powers granted to the security forces.

Speaking during a recent interview, Chuck explained that the tribunal, which is provided for in the emergency regulations, will consider any abuses, challenges and concerns by persons who have been affected.

The Emergency Powers Regulations, 2018, which has been gazetted, will be tabled in Parliament during its next sitting, in accordance with the Emergency Powers Act.

Chuck said he and Prime Minister Andrew Holness will be having discussions to determine the membership of the tribunal.

On January 18, 2018, Governor General Sir Patrick Allen signed a proclamation to implement the state of public emergency for St James in order to restore peace, reclaim public order and ensure public security in communities.

During the state of public emergency, the security forces will have the power to search, curtail business operating hours, restrict access to places, and detain persons without a warrant.

Speaking at a press briefing at Jamaica House later in the day, Minister Chuck explained that “these actions will not be done randomly (and) effective communication will occur by order and in accordance with the Emergency Powers Regulations”.

He assured that respect for human life will be preserved and protected. “Citizens, even if they are suspects, will be treated with the utmost decency, civility and respect for their rights and freedoms,” he noted.

— JIS

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