Thursday, June 17, 2004

Gya: Corruption in the law?

The mother of a 13-year-old girl involved in a controversial relationship with city businessman, Reeaz Khan, is seeking, through her attorneys, to intervene in the matter relevant to the notice of motion filed by Attorney General (AG) Doodnauth Singh earlier this week.

AG Singh is petitioning to stop the order made by Justice BS Roy last Friday, directing that the child be placed in 'protective custody' at the New Opportunity Corps for two weeks and that she receive professional counselling.
...
In his submissions with a view to establishing why the child's mother has locus standi to intervene in the matter relevant to AG Singh's habeas corpus application, Hughes noted that the AG is an executive of the state and is seeking an application against the judicial arm of the state. Thus, Hughes contended, a legal difficulty arises since the AG's application amounts to an application by the state for a declaration that the state has wrongfully detained the child.

According to Hughes, the child's mother has sole legal responsibility for and custody of her daughter, therefore, she [the mother] possesses the legal authority to move the court on her daughter's behalf or to appoint someone to act as 'next friend' or guardian of the child to do so. Hughes submitted that according to the instructions, his client [the child's mother] had not given the AG her permission to act as 'next friend' or guardian on her child's behalf, and further, that Justice Roy's decision had been made with the mother's consent.

Hughes argued that Justice Roy had acted, as conceded by the AG in his affidavit in support of the notice of motion, as upper guardian of the child when he directed that the child be placed in 'protective custody' and that the judge's legal capacity as upper guardian of the child is guaranteed under Section 21 of the Infancy Act, Chapter 46:01 of the Laws of Guyana.

Hughes pointed out that in circumstances where a judge is sued, the AG acts as the legal representative of that judge. In other words, Hughes said, the AG had sued himself by taking legal action against the judge.

Hughes told the court that the child is the subject of the habeas corpus proceedings brought against Khan and the Ministry of Human Services and Social Security by the child's mother in her effort to recover custody of her daughter from Khan. Thus the Constitutional rights, Hughes said, are only in relation to the state, not a person, and the child has no constitutional rights against her mother, and further, the only person capable of challenging the judge's order is the child's mother because she possesses sole legal custody of the child.
It seems the AG is not acting in the State's interest but on behalf of his former client, Reeaz Khan, the 37-year old pervert who has been having sex with a 13-year old girl. See this:
The Guyana Human Rights Association (GHRA) has called the intervention by the Attorney-General to block the implementation of a court order that the 13-year-old girl in a controversial relationship with a businessman be sent to the New Opportunity Corps as shocking.

It said in a release issued on Tuesday that because AG Doodnauth Singh was the former attorney of Reeaz Khan, the adult with whom the girl was involved, "his intervention may be perceived as neither disinterested, nor in the public interest."

The GHRA said that the intervention of the Attorney-General is "bringing the justice system into disrepute and brings inappropriate pressure to bear on the judge in question."

But Singh in an invited comment to the Stabroek News yesterday said that as Attorney-General it is his "responsibility to attempt to ensure that the constitutional rights of a 13-year-old are not violated."

About other sections of the GHRA statement which describes the Attorney- General's intervention as being "remarkable for its insensitivity to the efforts by the judge to protect the child and listen to a wide range of opinion of how best to do so", Singh declined to respond to what he describes as "the Association's contorted view of the law".

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