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Opposition party in Jamaica to boycott Upper House

The opposition Jamaica Labour Party (JLP), on Sunday announced plans to boycott the Upper House following Friday’s suspension of opposition Senator, Marlene Malahoo Forte.

During a meeting on Sunday, opposition members passed a resolution calling for a boycott of the Senate until the suspension is lifted.

“The resolution was unanimously passed and the resolution further states that the JLP Senators should not participate in any further deliberations in the Senate until the ban is lifted and an apology made to the Senator…” said JLP Deputy Leader in charge of Area Council One, Desmond McKenzie.

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On Friday, President of the Senate, Floyd Morris suspended Malahoo Forte, for failing to produce a copy of the letter from the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (JCPC), which in 2010 offered to sit in Jamaica on certain conditions.

The suspension was carried by the government majority.

Leader of Opposition Business, Senator Tom Tavares Finson said Marlene Malahoo Forte was not given an opportunity to address the matter before being suspended by Morris.

However, Morris has defended his decision to suspend the opposition senator, insisting that he had no choice based on her delay in handing over a letter to him as promised.

He said on Thursday he had requested the letter and he never got it. He said he also requested the letter on Friday.

“I requested the letter and I never got it. The member is sending to tell me that I can go ahead and adjourn the Senate and she will get it to me,” Morris said, adding that he was also not aware that Malahoo Forte was not in the Chamber when he handed down the suspension.

“I am not aware   – when I was going out of the Chamber I heard Senator Tom Tavares Finson shouting that the member was being suspended without her being in the Senate,” he added.

 

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