Francis concerned about court cancellation

A court cancellation yesterday has prompted expressions of concern from outspoken Attorney at Law, Mary Francis.

Francis told the Times that she was informed that the court cancellation was in order to facilitate a religious service  at Gros Islet for outgoing Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Victoria Charles-Clarke.

Francis made it clear that she was not against the DPP having a mass to thank God for the strength she was given in carrying out her duties over many years.

However she asserted that members of the public ought to be given early notice.

Francis disclosed that people came from as far as the South of the Island, only to be told upon arrival at the court that sittings had been cancelled.

“There were no prosecutors,” she revealed, adding that the situation was unprecedented.

According to Francis, the situation was not good enough.

She observed that court cancellations should be announced to members of the public and Attorneys at Law in advance to avoid inconvenience.

Francis asserted that the situation raises the question of respect for members of the public.

“The public has rights too because they try their best to come to court and then suddenly there is no court because of a mass,” she declared.

Francis stressed that the DPP was entitled to her mass.

Nevertheless she observed that given the problems facing the justice system today, it must demonstrate respect for the people in the same way that it expects people to respect it.

She said:

“There is a level of discourtesy to the public and given the current environment such things should not happen because it is not right or proper.”