Secret Turks and Caicos development agreement unlawful, says prominent local attorney
Written by Caribbean News Now Posted On: Saturday, 05 May 2012
PROVIDENCIALES, Turks and Caicos Islands - Well known local attorney and declared candidate for the leadership of the Progressive National Party (PNP), Carlos Simons QC, has described as “unlawful” the work permits and employment procedure contained in a hitherto secret development agreement between the Turks and Caicos Islands government and the Sandals/Beaches Group.In a statement released to the media, which we have republished in its entirety as an opinion piece, Simons deals in detail with the provisions of the Immigration Ordinance and its application to the Beaches agreement, concluding that “If I am right about that, then the clause 4 work permits and employment procedure contained in the Agreement was and remains unlawful.”
He goes on to make the point that, notwithstanding the responsibility of those officials in office at the time the agreement was entered into, the current governor and the current attorney general are in breach of the law for each day the situation continues.
“Responsibility for the making and publication of the necessary order lay with the then governor on the advice of the then attorney general. Those are obligations that continue to lie with the current governor and the current attorney general and they are in breach of the law for each day this situation continues,” Simons said.
Prior to the publication of our original report on April 25, 2012, News Now asked the government press office to what extent, if at all, was it in fact permissible for the government of the day to waive any relevant provisions of the Immigration Ordinance with regard to the special treatment afforded Beaches in relation to overseas workers.
No response has yet been received.
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