The Keith Mitchell Government has so far been unable to justify why it snubbed the Redhead family and did not issue an official statement on the passing of the Grenadian-born retired Court of Appeal Judge, Justice Albert Redhead who died on March 4.
In addition, the administration did not send anyone to the official funeral given to the OECS Court of Appeal judge in his adopted homeland of Antigua on March 26.
Legal Affairs Minister Kindra Maturine-Stewart remained totally silent and stone-faced when asked at Wednesday’s post-Cabinet Press briefing by a NEW TODAY reporter why the government did not issue a statement on the passing of the OECS legal luminary who was born in Grenada and also failed to send anyone to attend his official funeral in Antigua.
The senior government minister looked in the direction of Minister of Information, Senator Garraway who was sitting on her left and then to Press Secretary, Philomena Robertson who accompanied her to the press conference.
Minister Maturine-Stewart seemed lost for words and remained silent before the Press Secretary came to her defense stating, that they were unaware of Justice Redhead’s death.
“Unfortunately, we do not seem to be aware of that (but) we can probably look into it but I don’t think either of us here at the (head) table were aware of his passing”, Robinson told reporters.
Three weeks ago, THE NEW TODAY in an editorial chastised government for not sending a representative to Justice Redhead’s funeral and suggested that either Minister Maturine-Stewart or Attorney-General, Darshan Ramdhani should have been sent to represent Grenada at the official funeral.
All the other member territories of the sub-regional Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) including legal luminaries like Sir Dennis Byron, current Caribbean Court of Justice (CVCJ) President, Adrian Saunders and a host of judges and political figures were in attendance at the funeral.
Speaking with THE NEW TODAY on Wednesday, Alban Redhead, the Brooklyn, New York-based brother of Justice Redhead said that he had received a phone call from Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell two days after the passing of the retired judge in which he expressed condolences to the family.
According to Alban Redhead, the Prime Minister indicated an interest in attending the funeral in Antigua but was noticeable absent as did anyone from the Grenada government.
The surviving brother expressed shock that persons could tell reporters at the press conference that they did not know about the passing of Justice Redhead since it was all over the media including regularly on both GBN and MTV death announcement bulletins.
Information Minister Sen. Garraway who seemed to be also stunned by the question from THE NEW TODAY reporter finally chipped in by pointing out that “Government has continued” to recognise state officials who have passed on.
“Government has continued to ensure that former state officials (who) have passed on are recognised, to be there (at their funeral) and to be represented,” said Sen. Garraway who indicated that “it is required of government.”
“So, this is something that we have to do, has constantly been doing and will continue to do”, he added, making reference to plans already in motion to have a representative from Grenada at the upcoming funeral of former Secretary General of CARICOM and former Vice-Chancellor of the University of the West Indies, Grenadian-born Sir Alister McIntyre, who died Saturday in Jamaica.
“What I can say is that I am aware of Sir (Alistair) McIntyre’s death and government, of course, the Prime Minister, would have issued a statement and arrangements are being made as it relates to having someone to be there at his funeral”, Sen. Garraway said.
A member of the Redhead family had told THE NEW TODAY after the funeral that the only person from Grenada who made contact with the wife of the late Justice Redhead is former high court judge, Justice Lyle St. Paul and his wife Margaret, who sent a floral arrangement for the funeral.
It is also understood that Attorney-at-law, Ruggles Ferguson was the only practicing lawyer from Grenada who was at the funeral.