Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar says replacing the Privy Council with the Caribbean Court of Justice as this country's final court of appeal was not a priority for her Government.She made the statement in an interview with the BBC Caribbean Service earlier this week.Persad-Bissessar who is the outgoing chair of the Commonwealth was in London last week for celebrations organised by the 54-member nation grouping.She said her ten-month People's Partnership Government had many more critical matters to address before consideration could be given to making the CCJ T&T's final court of appeal.Persad-Bissessar said: "Yes, there is a place and time for the CCJ, but it is not an area of priority for my government at this point in time."
She listed crime, social programmes and infrastructure development as areas of major concern for her government at this time."I don't see that we are suffering as a result of having the Privy Council," she added.A few months ago, Persad-Bissessar said T&T would replace the Privy Council with the CCJ only if the population voted in favour of the move in a referendum. Former foreign affairs minister Paula Gopee-Scoon called on the Government to "bring on" the CCJ referendum.But Persad-Bissessar insisted: "The whole argument about the CCJ is not about justice."The argument is if you want to be a sovereign nation, you want to be independent, you know the world is not like that anymore," she said."This world is a global village, so what's wrong if judgments are being made by the Privy Council."