Attorney General Anil Nandlall and Representative of the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) list of candidates, Bharrat Jagdeo on Monday urged Chief Justice Roxane George-Wiltshire to throw out two election petitions by A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC), Basil Williams.
Jagdeo’s lawyer, Senior Counsel Douglas Mendes said no explanation has been given to the High Court why the documents for service to APNU+AFC Representative of the List, David Granger were not dated September 18 when they were being prepared. He added that the petitioners went on September 24 to serve Mr. Granger and signed on September 25, seemingly a mistake.
“You are left with a very unsatisfactory state of affairs that the affidavit of service states the wrong date and the explanation that you are given for that wrong date is also totally unsatisfactory. It just simply does not add up and it leads you to conclude that service within time has not been properly proved,” said Mr. Mendes, a prominent Trinidad and Tobago lawyer.
He argued that such a situation is the basis for the Chief Justice to dismiss the petition. He further contended that the affidavits of service were dated September 25 and filed on September 30 but now the court was being informed that service was done on September 18. Mr. Mendes questioned why no explanation was given for the 12-day delay in keeping with the law. “So what is the explanation for the twelve-day delay? There is none given. That is not as soon as maybe. As soon as maybe if there is a delay of twelve days would require an explanation about why there is a delay in order for you to make a determination that it was in fact filed as soon as maybe,” he said. The lawyer said in explanation was provided, the Chief Justice should be open to find that none was given. He further highlighted that the affidavit of service was filed on November 11 and no explanation was provided when it was raised in October 22.