It is universally accepted that no man is perfect. It therefore bothers me very much when I look at the newscasts on TV and read the daily papers to see the opposition party through its leading spokesperson always finding fault with what this current government is doing, and rarely if ever congratulating President Granger for all the different things he is striving to achieve, including the cleansing of the City Georgetown.
On the other hand the government is justifiably expressing the shortcomings of the opposition while they were governing this country over 23 years.
What I believe Guyana needs urgently at this stage is for everyone to put aside race. I wish to propose that there should be a broad-based collective effort by all to achieve a common objective in developing Guyana for all Guyanese.
At present things are done in a piecemeal fashion. Every area of government needs the support of the other. You cannot encourage mining and not have an efficient judiciary to deal with matters of dispute. You need healthy people to carry out the various activities so health is important to everyone.
Again if there is no proper security there will be problems in economic development. Therefore all the areas of development must be jointly reviewed as each affects the other.
Let us look at the current status of the judiciary. In my humble opinion there is serious need to have an immediate reassessment of what is in place. As a lawyer who has been practising in Guyana in excess of 40 years, I am constantly confronted and embarrassed when clients ask why their case is taking so long. I always try to explain it is not the lawyer’s fault and use my own experience to explain that in 2006 December I had an accident which wrote off my car and caused me to go to the United States of America to have brain surgery. In 2007 a leading attorney in Guyana filed an action on my behalf and up until now the case has not yet been heard, despite all the efforts made by myself and my attorney.
Now while I do agree that at present the judiciary is making an effort, in my humble view if a judge is allocated to a particular section over time he/she would become more efficient and experienced in what is being done, and this in itself will lead to a faster determination of cases.
The last point is that judges should each have a young lawyer as their registrar. This will have a twofold effect. Firstly young lawyers will get an opportunity to become better aware of the functions of the judiciary as well as equipped for opportunities in various sections of the judiciary such as magistrates, registrars of the court, court prosecutors, etc.
By approaching issues in the way I have suggested I believe that Guyana will be properly equipping itself to move on to great success.
Jonas M F Coddett