“If the good lord gives me life, I want to be able to look back and say that I would’ve served the people of the Caribbean and I would’ve done so with distinction, professionalism, honesty, and integrity; that is the legacy I want to leave.”
Those were the words of Attorney-at-Law, Derick Sylvester who is also Chairman of the Grenada Public Service Commission (PSC).
The barrister was speaking to reporters on Monday at his office shortly after returning home from Guyana where he was called to the bar in Georgetown on February 26.
During his trip to the South American mainland, Sylvester held meetings with members of Guyana media at the University of Guyana, Turkeyan Campus in the presence of Registrar, Dr. Nigel Gravesande and paid a courtesy call on Chancellor of the Judiciary and President of the Guyana bar.
Guyana is the third Caribbean country in which Sylvester has been admitted to practice law.
With over 15 years experience, the local attorney who has his eyes also set on sitting as a judge in the future, was admitted to practice in St Lucia in 2015.
According to Sylvester the time has come for him to experience other jurisdictions as, “I believe we should not think myopically, lest we suffer from short sightedness.”
“I’m a regionalist and believe that if we’re heading to the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) that is only the proper thing to do because we do not have any law in place wherein if you’re accepted in one OECS country or any island in the Caribbean, you automatically (are) accepted to the bar in the other country”, he said.
“…Guyana has acceded to the CCJ and we’re heading in that direction, so what better place to be admitted other than Guyana”, he added.
Sylvester believes that he is ready to “explore other jurisdictions” due to his 15 years experience in practicing administrative, criminal, civil litigation, constitutional, commercial, constitutional, conveyance, family law, human rights, insurance, labour, public law, mediation and non-contentious matters in the local courts.
He went on to say: “… Guyana is in the process of acceding to the new Civil Procedure Rules 2000 and since Grenada has been using the said rules since 2001 and having practiced with those rules, it would be an added benefit.
“…Once you are a lawyer who loves the law, reading, analysing, interpreting an indepth analysis is a matter of advantage. You must be able to read not only what is on the line but what is within the line.” he remarked.
Sylvester told reporters that his decision to practice law in other jurisdictions would not disrupt the flow of business here in Grenada, as it is all about time management.
“If you have a matter in another country that is going to take place let’s say the Court of Appeal, I wouldn’t take a matter in another country that is going to last three four weeks, a murder trial that is going to last three four weeks because I would not have the time to do that…whatever it is I’m open up to new avenues. I don’t believe I should restrict myself to Grenada. Grenada is just a drop in the ocean,” he said.
Sylvester who said he wants to do well for humanity has his eyes set in getting admitted very soon to the bar in the twin-island Republic of Trinidad and Tobago.