Broadcast company appeals decision blocking Queenstown office, tower

Telcor & Cultural Broadcasting Inc has appealed the decision by acting Chief Justice Ian Chang to quash a decision by the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) approving an application by the company to construct a building to house the company’s operations in Queenstown.

Justice Chang had ruled in favour of Queenstown residents, who attempted to block the construction in the area.

But in court documents seen by this newspaper, the company is arguing that the decision did not give enough attention to the provisions in the Town and Country Planning Act. It also suggests that either the proper party was not before the court or a bad order was made.

Trine Misick, a Queenstown resident, is named as the respondent, while the company is listed as a party added to the proceedings by leave of the court. The company is one of the three companies controversially allotted five radio frequencies by former President Bharrat Jagdeo in November 2011. Its contact person has been named by Prime Minister Sam Hinds as Omar Lochan–the Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment.

The appeal arose out of a decision made in the favour of Misick on January 31, when Justice Chang found that the CH&PA’s September 27, 2012 decision to approve the application by Telcor and Cultural Broadcasting Inc to erect a building at the South half of 119 Peter Rose and Laluni streets, for the purposes of office and broadcasting tower on the ground, “was made in bad faith, without or in excess of jurisdiction, in violation of By-laws 67 and 70 of the Georgetown By-laws, made under the Municipal and District Councils Act, Cap. 28:01, is arbitrary, capricious, irrational, procedurally improper, unreasonable, unlawful, ultra vires, null, void, and of no legal effect.”

However, Telcor’s appeal asks that the Chief Justice’s ruling be quashed and set aside or altered on the grounds that he did not give full and due attention to the provisions of the Town and Country Planning Act, Cap. 20:01, particularly Sections 16 and 17. It said too that By-Law 70 of the Georgetown Building By-Laws was not properly construed. The appeal is also made on the grounds that the granting of the nisi order without leave to apply therefore was contrary to the rules touching prerogative proceedings and that certiorari proceedings were not in the circumstances available to the applicant. The company also argues that the orders granted by the court were contrary both to law and to natural justice, which was denied to it.

The appeal was filed in February 12, 2013.


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