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Attorney General a no show at Justices of the Peace meeting

Paul Mahung reporting…

“The seventeenth annual general meeting of the National Association of Justices of the Peace and Commissioners of Supreme Court was held yesterday in Belize City. Reports and activities of the National Association of Justices of the Peace and Commissioners of Supreme Court over the past year was done by National President Adrian Danny Madrid who also spoke of major concerns.

Adrian Danny Madrid

“One of the disappointments that we had is that the Attorney General did not come to be our guest speaker and we could not appoint other JP’s and Senior JP’s. I received a call from his office on Thursday indicating to me and the only thing that the person said to me was “bad news the Attorney General cannot be your guest speaker and there will be no appointment of JP’s until further notice”. So I had to report that to our JP’s and I must say that they are very, very disappointed. I believe and the JP’s are telling me it was really unprofessional the way they did it.  Members and people elected and senators must remember that they took an oath.  Nevertheless, the meeting was well attended and we had a very good meeting. We’ll be dealing with training through RET which the US Embassy is assisting them to train us so we have decided that we will go ahead with the training and we will try to meet with the Attorney General to try to discuss for them to tell us what went wrong. Concerns that we have and we discuss at our meetings is those JP’s who continue to charge for their services; that’s very, very wrong and we need to deal with these JP’s and we need to be serious, serious about that. The other item is we need to have training for JP’s which is very, very important. A lot of time JP’s are appointed and they have no training they don’t know what they’re doing and those are the ones that get themselves into trouble so I would like to mention to JP’s out there to join the association. We are having a membership drive; you are welcome to join the association and then receive the proper training that is needed.”

A presentation was made by Doctor Abigail Mckay, a National Program Coordinator of protecting through education RET’s Program Melanie Burns.

Melanie Burns

“Most recently we started working on a project that is funded by the US Government Central American Regional Security Initiative to support strengthening government-civil society partnerships for timely transparency response to gender-based violence and trafficking in persons. RET is Release and Resilience through Education in Transition and so we will be working along with the Justice of the Peace association to strengthen their capacities to respond to these issues at the community level and we will be training them and we will be also working on strengthening the capacity of the association itself.”

Another presentation was made by head of the  United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Belize Andreas Wizner. Certificates of appreciation were presented to a number of dedicated members of the association by National President Madrid.