Caribbean News Now!

About Us Contact Us


Jump to your country or territory of interest

Advertise with us

Reach our daily visitors from around the Caribbean and throughout the world. Click here for rates and placements.


Submit news and opinion for publication


Click here to receive our daily regional news headlines by email.


Click here to browse our extensive archives going back to 2004

Also, for the convenience of our readers and the online community generally, we have reproduced the complete Caribbean Net News archives from 2004 to 2010 here.

Climate Change Watch

The Caribbean is especially vulnerable to rising sea levels brought about by global warming. Read the latest news and information here...

Follow Caribbean News Now on Twitter
Connect with Caribbean News Now on Linkedin

News from the Caribbean:

Back To Today's News

Antigua-Barbuda government confident of defeating opposition court challenge over passports
Published on February 18, 2016 Email To Friend    Print Version

By Clive Bacchus

ST JOHN’S, Antigua (WINN) -- The Antigua and Barbuda government has expressed confidence that it can defeat an opposition court challenge to 800 passports issued under its citizenship by investment programme (CIP) since taking office in June 2014.

Leader of the Opposition Harold Lovell
Leader of the opposition United Progressive Party (UPP) Harold Lovell told Parliament that the passports were illegal, as the government failed to appoint a board of directors to oversee the operations of the CIP.

"In the absence of the properly constituted authority to oversee the CIP programme, all the transactions that have taken place over the past year are null and void," Lovell claimed.

"They don't want to hear that, but I'm telling you, Madam President, all of those transactions are illegal, they will probably come back to parliament, and then say, whatever was done, they'll make it legal..." Lovell said, while claiming that the UPP would take the matter to court.

He also accused the government of failing to comply with a rule under Antigua and Barbuda law that requires government to give semi-annual reports on the CIP.

“You have instead the Cabinet doing as they like, failing to account; under the Citizenship by Investment Act, twice yearly there is to be an accounting to Parliament," Lovell charged.

"They have been in office for going on two years, and up to now they have not come to say to us how much money has been placed in the National Development Fund."

In an interview with Antigua and Barbuda's Observer Radio, Attorney General Steadroy "Cutie" Benjamin dismissed the opposition challenge that the government was in breach of the law.

"His legal opinion is of no merit, and if he wants to challenge it, let him do so, but I can tell you one thing though, the UPP government has a record of being unsuccessful in the court, over 85 percent they have lost ..." Benjamin said, while predicting another loss for the UPP.

“We are satisfied, that in fact, even though the Board has not yet been established, the activities of the unit are consistent with the law," he said.

He acknowledged that the Board was not established but argued that it was merely to recommend to the minister and Cabinet and its recommendations could be rejected.

Benjamin contended that, since the CIP was established in 2013, the CIP Unit was the body that supervised the processing of applications.

Republished with permission of West Indies News Network
Reads: 6693

Click here to receive daily news headlines from Caribbean News Now!



No comments on this topic yet. Be the first one to submit a comment.


As a result of our comments feature being overtaken in recent weeks by spammers using fake email addresses, producing a large number of bounced verification emails each day, we have reluctantly decided to suspend the comments section until further notice.

User comments posted on this website are the sole views and opinions of the comment author and are not representative of Caribbean News Now or its staff. Caribbean News Now accepts no liability and will not be held accountable for user comments.
Caribbean News Now reserves the right to remove, edit or censor any comments. Any content that is considered unsuitable, unlawful or offensive, includes personal details, advertises or promotes products, services or websites or repeats previous comments will not be approved.
Before posting, please refer to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Other Headlines:

Regional Sports: