16th February 2016
Within a matter of months Legal Practioners and by and large members of the public will be able to easily access the laws of Antigua and Barbuda as plans have been put in place to consolidate the country’s laws into volumes with all amendments added and compiled into single pieces of legislation.
This announcement was made during the Attorney General’s the Hon. Steadroy Cutie Benjamin budget presentation in Parliament.
Benjamin said Antigua and Barbuda labour Party (ABLP) is taking a proactive approach in ensuring that it is done, as the government plans to bring about effective change where law is concern.
He added that having all the laws of Antigua and Barbuda consolidated completely into volumes with all amendments contained in one act this would help to make reference to the law easier and less difficult to follow.
Director of Public Prosecution Anthony Armstrong welcomes the move, as it is long in coming. He said it will be very useful as for the past 10-15 years, numerous amendments of laws have been made and they are scattered all over the place.
Armstrong believes that, “consolidating all the amendments and existing laws will considerably improve efficiency in terms of research and in terms of regularly accessing relevant legalization and will be of great help to legal practitioners and public.”
The law revision process started in 2013 and is presently ongoing. The principal Acts encompassing volumes 1 to 9 have been consolidated and revised in certain areas, and some minor adjustments are in the process of being made.
Additionally, the statutory instruments from volumes 10 to 15 are also being revised, as some have been repealed with the passing of new ones.
The Regional Law Revision Centre located in Anguilla have provided proofreading services, designed a legislative template for the proper formatting of the laws of Antigua and Barbuda and have also assisted in templating our laws after they have been proof read.
The CARICOM Secretariat has offered assistance to the country by dispatching a law revision consultant in the person of Justice Zuru. He has trained Mrs. Susan Jarvis, the Law Revision Assistant, in the field of law revision.
The law revision office has also been ably assisted by Miss Natasha Williams who provides clerical services to the office.
The revised laws should be published later this year.
The Minister commended Mrs. Susan Jarvis Legal Drafter within the Ministry of Legal Affairs for the tremendous work that she has been doing in getting the laws together.
Laurisa Francis Communications Officer Tel: (268) 464-5348