Less than three weeks after the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Victoria Clarke-Charles revealed during a press conference that the majority of the IMPACS Report did not contain “the evidentiary material” admissible in accordance with local laws, the European Union has released its own statement on the report, calling on “all those responsible to ensure due process according to the St. Lucia criminal law system”.
Below is the full EU statement obtained exclusively by St. Lucia News Online:
Local EU Statement on St Lucia
The European Union Delegation issues the following statement in agreement with the EU Heads of Mission responsible for St. Lucia, following their meeting in Barbados of 1 December 2015:
“The EU reiterates its support and strong commitment to the development of St Lucia recognizing the challenges it faces as a small and vulnerable island state. Substantive support has been provided by the EU and its Member States in various areas, from health, trade, agriculture to infrastructure, and much progress has been made.
Successful growth and development include effective legal systems and criminal justice. In this context, the public statement on 8 March 2015 by the Honourable Prime Minister Kenny Anthony on the IMPACS report is very important. Following this statement, due process must be followed. Without due process, there would be no effective criminal justice system.
The EU and it Member States call on those responsible to ensure due process according to the St Lucia criminal law system.
Effective judicial systems are critical for a country’s Human Rights record. With much progress achieved on other fronts, it would be regrettable if this issue would undermine St Lucia’s reputation in the international community. It is in the full interest of all St Lucians, and of EU visitors and investors, to see this situation move forward.
The EU and its Member States stand ready to support the country’s endeavours in this critical area, including with assistance under the 11th EDF (European Development Fund) Regional Indicative Program, which has 44 million EUR assigned to programs fighting crime and security.”