Carmona answers PM – Sabbatical decision final

(Trinidad Express) President Anthony Carmona has responded to Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley’s request for an explanation on what authority he granted sabbatical leave to Chief Justice Ivor Archie.

And Carmona is sticking to his original decision, which allows Archie to fly off to Washington DC for six months.

This was disclosed in a statement from the Office of the Prime Minister yesterday morning.

The statement reads: “In response to the letter of March 7th from Prime Minister Dr the Honourable Keith Rowley to His Excellency President Anthony Carmona requesting an explanation of the authority by which the President has purportedly granted sabbatical leave to the Chief Justice, Mr. Ivor Archie, the President has responded reaffirming his decision.

The Honourable Prime Minister is examining the situation and will report to the country in short order”.

Carmona has been called upon by the PM to explain the granting of sabbatical leave to Archie, before he leaves office.

It was last week Tuesday that Justice Nadia Kangaloo ruled that the Law Association cannot investigate Archie and the only way a judge or a chief justice could be removed from his/her position was by way of impeachment proceedings as outlined in Section 137 of the Constitution. This decision has since been appealed.

On that same day it was revealed that Archie would be proceeding on sabbatical leave which was requested on November 8, 2017 and approved by Carmona on February 5, 2018.

Carmona granted the sabbatical leave to Archie to allow him to rest, reflect and participate in the United States Federal Judicial Centre’s Visiting Foreign Judicial Fellows Programme in Washington, DC. Archie was supposed to have left on March 12 to return around August 31.

Last Tuesday Carmona flew to Florida and returned on Sunday. During his absence, Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley wrote to the President seeking clarification on the legal authority for the granting of sabbatical leave to the Chief Justice.

The Prime Minister first knew about the CJ’s sabbatical leave when he received a letter from the President, dated March 6, 2018, requesting approval for the appointment for someone to act.

Acting President Christine Kangaloo last Friday stated that she had communicated with Archie and he agreed to her request that he defer his leave until Carmona’s return to enable communication on the Prime Minister’s letter. Archie agreed and is waiting for the issue to be cleared up.

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