New appeal court judge sworn in

Justice Rabi Shankar Sukul was yesterday sworn in by President Donald Ramotar as an Appeal Court Judge during a simple ceremony at the Office of the President (OP).

After taking the Oath of Office, Justice Sukul said it was a landmark occasion for him and he expressed thanks to the President, the Chancellor of the Judiciary and the Office of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) who stood by him.

Ramotar, in a short speech, expressed hope that his service will be a lengthy one and that he will be fair in his decisions.

Justice Rabi Shankar Sukul (left) taking the Oath yesterday as President Donald Ramotar looks on.
Justice Rabi Shankar Sukul (left) taking the Oath yesterday as President Donald Ramotar looks on.

Asked by reporters what ideas he brings to the judicial system, Justice Sukul said that for him to answer that question “truthfully and practically, it will take some time”. He said that he is bringing from England 25 years of legal practice “in a jurisdiction that is probably framed (with) local jurisprudence, that I think is potentially quite helpful”. He said that he intends to apply the legal principles as well as law and logic and good, sound, objective judicial reasoning, which he has learnt during his practice in the United Kingdom, and will apply them to his native land.

Asked about some of the shortcomings he foresees in the local judicial system, he said, “I cannot credit myself with an extensive knowledge of the local judicial system because if I had that extensive knowledge I would have been able to answer everybody’s questions more accurately”.

Justice Sukul said Guyana’s judicial system is unique as it is not open to criticism like the United Kingdom. He said he had seen shortcomings there for many years and had complained about them.

Among those present at the ceremony were Sukul’s relatives including his wife, as well as Attorney General Anil Nandlall, Chancellor (ag) Justice Carl Singh and Director of Public Prose-cutions (DPP) Shalimar Ali-Hack.

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