The decision by a British High Court judge to reject Dr. Sheikh Juffali’s claim to have immunity from legal action as a diplomat for Saint Lucia and allow his ex-wife to sue him, has raised many eyebrows.
Describing the situation as “sad,” Senator Mary Isaac told the media on Tuesday (Jan.9) that the issue does not auger well for Saint Lucia and its current good diplomatic relation with the United Kingdom.
Isaac said, “Seeing a court getting Saint Lucia entangled in a situation like that is not very good. It does not speak well for Saint Lucia and I believe all of that could have been avoided.”
The Senator said the reason for her statement is mainly based on the court’s ruling which has now declared that Dr. Juffali’s appointment is a “farce,” and has described his diplomatic appointment as ‘spurious.’
Isaac recalls that the country was not told whether Dr. Juffali was holding a diplomatic passport or not, explaining that when the question was asked by the Opposition, they did not receive an answer.
“So, if he does have a Saint Lucia diplomatic passport, and the courts declare that the whole situation is a dishonest one, that borders to some corruption taking place,” she asserted.
The former trade unionist reiterated that the situation does not auger well for the island and it is making a mockery of the very same Vienna convention that the government alluded to in a previous statement.
“It would be interesting to see what Saint Lucia does for hereon,” she ended.
The British High Court judge, Justice Hayden declared: ‘I am satisfied that what has transpired here is that [Dr Juffali] has sought and obtained a diplomatic appointment with the sole intention of defeating [Ms Estrada’s] claims consequent on the breakdown of their marriage.
‘Dr Juffali has not, in any real sense, taken up his appointment, nor has he discharged any responsibilities in connection with it. It is an entirely artificial construct,’ the Daily Mail reported.
He was appointed to represent Saint Lucia at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) two years ago, but has never attended a meeting of the London-based organisation and has allegedly spent much of the time ill in hospital.