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We must march & sick out for laws to be ‘equal’ for everyone– Speaker

We must march & sick out for laws to be ‘equal’ for everyone– Speaker

Speaker of the Virgin Islands (VI) House of Assembly, Hon Julian Willock has called on Government critics to take a stand to ensure that the laws of the territory are equal for all.

The Speakers’ statement came as some members of the community were seeking to mobilise workers to sick out and stage a protests against the sitting Government and the Hon Speaker over legal fees incurred by the Speaker in a withdrawn case against three CoI lawyers.

Hon Willock, in his capacity as Speaker and in a bid to hold the CoI lawyers accountable, had filed an injunction against the three who were not called to the BVI Bar in accordance with the Legal Professions Act 2015, however, were still practising in the territory.

The case subsequently had to be withdrawn after it was found that Hon Willock needed the permission of the Attorney General, Hon Dawn J. Smith, to move forward. However, while the Attorney General had indicated that the three lawyers needed to be called to the bar, she somehow refused to back the case to block the three lawyers from continuing to practice law despite them not being called.

“The same way they want my members of the House of Assembly accountable, we must hold also judiciary accountable for ensuring that we have the rule of law applies to everybody,” Hon Willock told Umoja host Cromwell Smith aka Ed Ju Enka on Monday, November 15, 2021.

The case subsequently had to be withdrawn after it was found that Hon Willock needed the permission of the Attorney General, Hon Dawn J. Smith to move forward. However, while the Attorney General had indicated that the three needed to be called to the bar, she somehow refused to back the case to block the three lawyers from continuing to practice law despite them not being called.


Speaker has right to ensure laws are adhered to - Hon Willock


“As the Speaker, those laws are passed in the House of Assembly… I also have a right, I also have an obligation to make sure that when once the laws are passed in the House of Assembly that our laws must be adhered to or else, we would have a system where there are two judicial systems,”

Hon Willock said the mission should be that there is not one law for ‘them’ and other law for ‘us”.

“We have to fight against that, we must march against that, we must sick out against that, we must continue to agitate against that. That’s the law, regardless of who you from, where you from, that the law must apply equally across the board for every member,” he said.

The HoA Speaker said that is the message the critics need to understand and see the bigger picture of the situation, “Whether you like the Speaker, or you like the Premier, or you like the Leader of Opposition, that's that another story,” he said.

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