MAYNARD-GIBSON: Madam President, I join with the Honourable Leader opposite in welcoming Senator Delaney and congratulating him on his appointment as Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs. He comes to this post at a critical juncture in our country’s history. We have a record number of murders! 79 Murders so far this year!
I speak to the Honourable Senator with hope. We on this side note that after being for the past 2 years, the Ministry of Financial Services and Investments has in essence been restored in his new responsibilities. He is knowledgeable about financial services and we hope that he will utilize his considerable knowledge to try to rebuild what has been destroyed over the past 2 years.
We hope that having been a Managing Partner in an international law firm, he will utilize this knowledge to continue the attempt to bring the Attorney General’s Chambers to the position of the country’s premier Chambers, as it ought to be. We also hope that he will be given the resources to achieve this goal. It is the people’s law firm. It is the firm that advises about our international obligations and ensures that we are compliant with them.
Crime is at an unprecedented level. We note the recent remarks of the new Commissioner of Police and we hope that you will restore Swift Justice, by whatever name you wish to call it. It makes sense for all of the relevant agencies involved in the administration of justice of to communicate, cooperate and collaborate.
The Right Honorable Prime Minister has indicated that you are a critical component in the crime fighting effort. You have our support. You must take some bold steps. I want to make some suggestions:
- 1. Anyone who shoots a policeman, threatens a policeman, attacks a judge or threatens a judge should be tried immediately. They should go to the top of the queue and that matter be set down for immediate trial.
- 2. Murderers should not be let out on bail
- 3. Establish a web site which citizens can easily access for the purpose of finding out who is out on bail. People are charged in public and given bail in public. This is public information. It should be easy for members of the public to find out who is out on bail. Right now policemen who are responsible for the arrest of criminals are being approached by those criminals when they are released on bail. The other day a policeman told me that when he was on the line at Galleria with his wife and children one of the persons that he had arrested approached him in a threatening manner and told him that he is now out on bail. This should never happen.
I hope that you will encourage people to stop blaming judges for the problems in the administration of justice. Judges are ready to sit. It is not their fault that system is broken. Government is largely responsible for the broken system. The Government must provide the resources for the effective administration of justice.
These are not new problems. The Prime Minister has indicated confidence in you. We join in. For the good of the country, you must be successful.
Finally, I hope that you will hold your new position for more than 18 months. It will take more than 18 months to solve these problems.
Welcome to this honourable place.