Dear Editor,On May 21st, 2018, sections of the media graciously published my letter which called attention to the linkage between an individual at the Caribbean Court of Justice and the APNU/AFC Coalition Government. Now, a year later, questions on the same matter remain unanswered.I remind that, in 2012, according to an article dated October 13, 2012, it was Senior Counsel Donald Trotman (Minister Raphael Trotman’s father) and retired Justice James Patterson, current Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission, who presented the petition for Patterson’s grandson, Mr. Richard Layne, to be admitted to the local Bar.Mr. Layne, whose grandfather’s appointment is currently challenged and is currently before the Caribbean Court of Justice, is currently a Judicial Assistant attached to the very Court.According to his LinkedIn profile, Mr. Layne, among other things, conducts research for the President of the Court on all legal matters impacting the work of the Court, and prepares legal opinions and advice to the President on matters brought to the attention of the Court.The Caribbean Court of Justice is expected to soon rule on the challenge to Mr. Layne’s grandfather’s appointment as the Chairman of GECOM. In Guyana’s case, can we expect a fair decision on this matter? Will Mr. Layne present an unbiased legal opinion to the Caribbean Court of Justice? Or will Mr. Layne work in his grandfather’s interest and say ‘to hell’ with our country’s Constitution?These questions ought to be answered in order to remove doubts as to the fairness and impartiality of the CCJ. Such concerns have been raised not only in respect to Guyana alone, but several other Caribbean islands. It is these very concerns which have seen several Caribbean governments express reservations about making the CCJ their final legal arbiter.Regards,Todd A Morgan
A key U.S. House of Representatives committee is moving to block the Obama administration’s controversial proposal to close a federal marine research laboratory in North Carolina.The Committee on Appropriations today released a draft spending bill for the 2015 fiscal year that begins 1 October. It includes funding for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and, in an accompanying report, the panel bars NOAA from moving ahead with plans to consolidate several laboratories and close a century-old lab on an island near the town of Beaufort.The panel also asks NOAA to send lawmakers a report within 1 year “on all National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) facilities and labs, to include current maintenance costs as well as a detailed analysis of how the research conducted by NCCOS laboratories would be affected by any proposed NCCOS lab consolidation.”Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)The move comes after North Carolina lawmakers had protested the proposed closure and called on the spending panel to keep the lab open. The House panel is expected to approve the bill in a vote Thursday and send it to the full House. The Senate has not yet released its version of the spending bill, and no final decision on the legislation is expected until later this year, after the November elections.Still, the House move comes as a relief to the Beaufort lab’s supporters in Congress. “I’m very pleased we were able to work together to secure this funding because the lab has a significant economic impact, and it is critical to maintaining the competitiveness of our state’s research enterprise,” said Representative David Price (D-NC) in a statement.A NOAA spokeswoman didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.