Skip to content

New Wing of the Court of Appeal Commissioned

  • by

The commissioning of a more than $170 million, new wing added to the Court of Appeal is testament to the transformation that is taking place across all sectors in Guyana.

Minister of Legal Affairs and Attorney General, Senior Counsel Mohabir Anil Nandlall on Monday formally commissioned the three-story building which will create a more spacious and conducive environment to deliver justice at the Court of Appeal.

Minister of Legal Affairs and Attorney General SC Mohabir Anil Nandlall delivering remarks

“This is only going to be one in many transformational interventions that will take place shortly.  Our government is acutely aware of the fundamental role that the judiciary and our institutions must play in the transformation which is taking place across the landscape of our country. In fact we are of the firm view that the judiciary, law and order, and the institutions of justice are the foundation upon which modern society rests,” Minister Nandlall told members of the judiciary, and other invited guests at the commissioning ceremony.

He noted that government has never hesitated in partnering with the judiciary, and once the resources are available, execute both capital and current projects, and initiatives.

He noted that currently there are court houses being built in various parts of the country where they never existed before.

“There is a physical transformation taking place when the government speaks about a physical transformation. We are not only speaking about a transformation from an executive perspective. We are speaking about a transformation across every divide in our country and as I said, the judiciary would never be left out,” minister Nandlall stated.

Madam Justice Yonette Cummings-Edwards

Minister of Legal Affairs and Attorney General SC Mohabir Anil Nandlall delivering remarks

Inside the new court room at the Court of Appeal

Minister of Legal Affairs and Attorney General SC Mohabir Anil Nandlall, Minister of Public Works Bisho Juan Edghill and Madam Roxanne George Chief Justice (a.g), touring the facility.

Minister of Legal Affairs and Attorney General SC Mohabir Anil Nandlall and Madam Justice Yonette Cummings-Edwards unveil the plaque to officially commission the new wing of the Court of Appeal.

Inside the new court room at the Court of Appeal

While noting the many accomplishments of Guyana’s legal system, the minister also noted the implementation of the most advanced technological facilities like the e filing project and e-payments system, provided for under the e-transaction act.

He stated that the judiciary and the legal profession should have no doubt about the government’s commitment to working with the judiciary to ensure that Guyana has the most modern legal system in the Caribbean.

 “It is already a recognized and an undisputed fact that we have by far the most aggressive, legislative agenda in the entire Caribbean perhaps the entire commonwealth, other countries in the Caribbean marvel at the speed at which we are progressing,” Minister Nandlall stated.

The Court of Appeal was established in 1966 and was once a residence.

Chancellor of the Judiciary, Madam Justice Yonette Cummings-Edwards, while delivering her address at the commissioning ceremony, noted that there was a lack of space.

“We were literally bursting in our seams. Our files were on the ground, our cabinets couldn’t hold in the offices. We were using the basement as it were and still that was not sufficient space. There was no reading room for the library and hardly any facilities for our admin staff,” she stated. 

This was compounded by the exponential increase in the number of appeals, and a growing number of judges, brought a dire need to expand the space.

“Our economic activities in our country shows the need for more matters to be dealt with. Be it commercial matters, be it environmental and other matters, the need is there for litigation for these cases to be heard in a way that is conducive to justice,” she stated.

The new extension measures 57 feet Wide and 70 feet long (50 x 70 feet), and is three stories.

It boasts an additional modern courtroom, with cutting edge technology where both criminal and civil cases can be heard, admin spaces, offices, six judge’s chambers, amd a judicial service commission secretariat.  It also features a lawyer’s robing room, an office for legal practitioners, a library, a gym, a judges assembly room and a lounge.

An elevator is will be added.

 “It is a story about resilience from a car park to a court house, it’s about having justice serves in an efficient and an accessible way we are resolute in our quest for justice and our quest for better conditions in which we serve our people,” she stated.

The contract for the extension was signed on October 27,2021 at an estimate of over $124M. The revised estimate amounts to over $170.5M.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.