CONDEMNATION BY THE BAR COUNCIL OF THE BAR ASSOCIATION OF GUYANA ON RECENT REPORTED STATEMENTS BY THE HONOURABLE ATTORNEY GENERAL

11th July 2019

The Bar Council of The Bar Association of Guyana unequivocally and strongly condemns the statements attributed to the Honourable Attorney General of Guyana, Mr. Basil Williams, S.C. in which he has intimated, inter alia, that the “judiciary is being used for money laundering”. (Guyana Chronicle, July 11, 2019 edition under the heading “We have a right to protect taxpayers’ money”).

Such statements are irresponsible, ill-advised and bring the administration of justice into serious disrepute. It gives the undesirable impression that the Judiciary has taken into consideration and ruled on matters other than principles of law. The Bar Association of Guyana reminds all of Guyana that the administration of justice, separation of powers and the rule of law are firm pillars of our democratic society. Statements which are directly targeted at this pillar shake the foundation of our society. More specifically, statements in and out of Court which tend to bring the administration of justice into disrepute are punishable as contempt of court both at common law and now under statute.

The Bar Association calls for an immediate withdrawal of the statement, and for all parties to refrain from such irresponsible and damaging statements in the future.