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CCJ judgment validates RTC

RTC PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad – Does the judgment of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) in the Shanique Myrie case open the door for someone to have the court rule that governments of Caricom are violating the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas (RTC) and should therefore be forced to end their continuing resistance to having the CCJ replace the British Privy Council as their final court of appeal? It is a question I shall return to later in this column.
Immediately, though, the CCJ’s judgment that the government of Barbados violated the RTC in its denial to Ms Myrie of the right of free movement and humiliatingly strip-searching her, inclusive of intruding fingers up her body cavity, at its strongest, deals with the need to maintain the integrity of the Caribbean Community and the power of the CCJ to hold member states to the decisions they have taken in the RTC.
The case attracted regional and international attention first because of its powerful human-interest appeal: a young woman was allegedly abused by authority and, ultimately, because the action was supported after the fact by the state of Barbados and against elements of an agreement its government had signed on to.

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