CASTRIES, Saint Lucia – Tuesday, February 9, 2016 – In a ruling on whether Christina Estrada, ex wife of St. Lucia’s Ambassador Dr. Walid Juffali, can or cannot seek redress and compensation through a British High Court Family Division we see a similar court has now ruled she can.
But this will be Britain’s business between Juffali and his wife.
However the ruling has a fall out for St. Lucia and this will be our business between the government and us citizens.
The judge ruled he is satisfied what transpired was that (Dr. Juffali) sought and obtained a diplomatic appointment with the sole intention of defeating (Ms. Estrada’s) claims consequent on the breakdown of their marriage, is a telling conclusion.
That the judge also indicated that Dr. Juffali has not, in any real sense, taken up his appointment, nor has he discharged any responsibilities in connection with it and his diplomatic appointment is spurious and an entirely artificial construct is an indictment on the Government of St. Lucia.
What the judge could not and did not say was to tell St. Lucians do the math and figure out any dark details for ourselves. With the facts as we know them and with the judgment, indicates there had to have been consort between Juffali and our government unless government can claim to have been seriously duped, which we have got no indication of.
To the contrary our government’s initial response was a NO to Britain’s Foreign Office request to waive the immunity and voila, the real reason for their convenient explanations will be the crème de la crème.
Our island suffers another continuing indignity and our reputation in the international community and British courts tarnished. We indicated previously that a small island such as ours with no great financial wealth and natural resources would only have its name to cherish and protect.
Consequently we cannot then allow outsiders if with dubious intentions and means to destroy St. Lucia’s name, worst when facilitated by our very own. So the inevitable cross roads has arrived. Is this the new style of governance? What will the government now say to us or more importantly what will we ask of our government?
Will we get the Roachmel and Grynberg silence again? St. Lucians have now been sufficiently armed with a court ruling and judicial comments to once and for all demand of the Prime Minister, his Minister of Foreign Affairs and the former St. Lucian Ambassador to England a detailed explanation of this whole Juffali matter.
Anything less will be unacceptable. Will the government respect the intelligence of its people? Will we now have a quasi Ambassador making us a laughing stock or will the government accede and call it a day?
It is on that basis many have been very suspicious of the newly launched Citizen Investment Programme now headed by the same former ambassador.
So will this now make more remote the already remote diabetes research centre which Minister Alvina Reynolds says will save thousands of lives, as if insulin and international diabetes research has not already been doing? The plot continues to thicken.