It’s going almost unnoticed that Grenada will be sending a huge delegation to Paris, France to attend the UN Climate Change conference.
The Government Information Service (GIS) has not posted on its website anything about the delegation and its composition for the meeting.
However, news of the delegation’s upcoming visit to France was carried in the newscast this past week on a local radio station.
The 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP 21 or CMP 11 will be held in Le Bourget in France, from November 30 to December 11 with the aim of trying to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, from all the nations of the world.
THE NEW TODAY is wondering whether or not GIS has deliberately chosen to downplay the overseas assignment of the delegation, which includes Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell.
It should be recalled that when Mitchell’s New National Party (NNP) was in opposition, it often chided the then ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration of Tillman Thomas for wasting taxpayers money by sending large delegations to these climate change conferences.
The Member of Parliament for St. Mark, the current Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Clarice Modeste-Curwen was most vociferous in her condemnation of Grenada’s attendance at several of the climate change sessions.
There was one occasion when she uttered words to the effect that the money used by Grenada to send persons to attend these meetings could be better utilised in providing improved healthcare for our people.
Is the NNP administration doing the same thing now in office that it was criticising Congress of doing by sending large delegations to climate change conferences?
The fact of the matter is that Grenada, whether under NDC or NNP, was not paying large sums of money to send delegations to these international climate change gatherings.
The traveling and accommodation budget was often met by international funding agencies and not the taxpayers of this country.
Grenada was even in a better position to send delegation after delegation to these conferences because as Chairman of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) it was able to get funding to send a number of persons to these conferences.
The records will show that the size of Grenada’s delegation reduced as the island no longer held the Chairmanship of AOSIS.
It should also be noted that a number of projects now being implemented by the Mitchell government related to the environment came from the hard work of past delegations and in particular the former Congress Minister of Foreign Affairs and Health, Karl Hood.
Mr. Hood might be considered as not a good politician but no one can seriously challenge the commitment and hard work he put in to walk the floor of these climate change conferences to attract money for Projects for Grenada.
Finally, THE NEW TODAY wish to make some passing remarks about the spate of Gag Orders that are coming from proceedings in the high court.
These Gag Orders are repugnant and offensive to press freedom.
THE NEW TODAY is seeking advise as to if and how it can challenge these Gag Orders.
It is our understanding that media houses in England can challenge Gag Orders since the law makes provisions for such action on their part.
A seasoned attorney-at-law in England advised us that in the United Kingdom “the press usually make applications to become an interested party (in Gag Order cases) but they usually do these as emergency actions on the day of any hearings though often they know in advance that a party seeks such an order to so apply to be joined as an interested party”.
In all of the three cases so far in which the Gag Orders were issued, THE NEW TODAY had no such prior knowledge that such applications were going to be made.
We intend to kept the public informed about this new trend that is emerging in our jurisdiction.
It should also be noted that the relevant authorities have not yet replaced the Chairperson of the Legal Council who left Grenada months ago – this is the body responsible for the disciplining of counsel and to whom the public can seek redress.
There is a long outstanding matter in which the Legal Council was called upon to enforce the judgment coming from the high court to set up the relevant committee to consider suspension or disbarment of a particular lawyer who failed to account for thousands of dollars belonging to one of her clients.
These are the same lawyers parading within the Grenada Bar Association and who will be operating within the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ).
Grenadians, be on your guard as the worst is yet to come because some current members of the legal profession are already sending out serious threats to the public that “it is our court that you are coming before” and you may have to be very careful in challenging