PM Anthony gives goverment’s position on Juffali affair

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PM Anthony gives goverment’s position on Juffali affair
Left to right: Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony,
Left to right: Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony,
Left to right: Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony,Dr. Walid Juffali

The ‘Juffali affair’ as it is commonly being referred to, has dominated the news in both the local and British press over the past few weeks with varying arguments being put forward as to why the Government of Saint Lucia should allow its Permanent Representative to the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) Dr. Walid Juffali, to invoke diplomatic immunity in a civil case against his ex-wife or not.

The Office of the Prime Minister had already issued a statement on its decision, but Dr. Kenny Anthony sought to provide some more clarifications during his New Year’s address, as to the reason behind the government’s decision, which he noted has caused concern in some quarters, given Saint Lucia’s close historical ties with the United Kingdom.

According to the Prime Minister, the request of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office was unprecedented in that it was made on behalf of a private citizen.“Normally, such requests are made on behalf of the state, in instances where the state has a defined interest of its own,” he explained.

Secondly, the Prime Minister said, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office could not point to a single instance where a foreign Government had ever acceded to such a request.

He said while his government respected the right of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to establish its own threshold to entertain such requests, they did not believe that the threshold which had established had been met in this specific instance.

Dr. Anthony said: “to accede to the request would have set a dangerous precedent and place other States at risk by the force of the precedent. We have a duty to uphold the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Privileges and Immunities.”

The Prime Minister made it clear that Saint Lucia has a responsibility to protect its diplomats, except where they commit criminal offences or acts which are outrageous and unprecedented in nature and character.

“In this matter, the Government of Saint Lucia has been guided by our commitment to uphold the principles of International Law and respect for due process. It was not an easy decision to make given the pressures involved but we must always seek to do what we believe to be right even if we are alone,” he explained.

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43 COMMENTS

  1. The bigger countries contiune to bully the smaller islands and finally we can stand up to them. They do the same thing and get away with it. Are we so desperate to dances to their music and collect the left over crumbs? The PM took a stand let us support him on this one. I do not support politicians but I am tired of being bullied by the developed countries and they do not give us anything that will help us sustain ourselves.

    (1)(24)

  2. JUFFALI did not become or remain a billionaire by being stupid. He saw years ahead and took necessay action. Let us say he was prepared. The man has access to persons who would have advised him on the best way to divorce and still hold on to his billions. It is a pity that some St.Lucians did not realize what his real motive was.

    (19)(0)

  3. In my opinion the following questions have to be answered by the St Lucian Prime Minister:
    1. What prior association did Mr Juffali have with Saint Lucia?
    2. What credentials does Mr Juffali possess that qualifies him perform the role of Permanent Representative to the International Maritime Organisation?
    3. Does Mr Juffali receive any remuneration for performing this role? If not, why not?
    4. What due diligence on Mr Juffali did the St Lucian government perform prior to his appointment?
    5. What explicit brief did Mr Juffali receive from the St Lucian government for him to effectively discharge his duties as a Permanent Representative to IMO?
    6. What financial incentives, if any, did Mr Juffali offer to provide either to St Lucia's economy, Treasury or politicians?

    For Dr Kenny Anthony to hide behind the smoke screen of International Law and protocol only serves to add credence to the accusation of alleged shady politics and corruption.

    (74)(0)

  4. Kenny is right on the principle of the Immunity waiver......however...

    it seems that Jufalli sort to obtain this post after his wife began the legal actions against him. Kenny knew that in no way would any country relinquish diplomatic immunity and would receive international support to not do so.

    Kenny needs to give us the date that Juffali was granted this post and the date the passport was issued. this is public information and needs to be made known to all.

    (25)(0)

  5. Dr Kenny plz. Why employ him in such position with no experience and why he never attend a meeting. That's the issue.

    (18)(0)

    • Modern diplomatic immunity is a bit of legal fiction called extraterritoriality. Legal fictions are concepts that exist in flagrant contradiction to reality but are observed as real for the purpose of expediting legal matters.
      Under the rules of immunity, a host country can demand the diplomat be recalled.

      Dean McCastree

      (14)(0)

  6. Was this guy even vetted in the right way to represent St.Lucia on the International Maritime Organisation? St.Lucian's you can't allow Kenny and his government to take people for granted.Voice your feelings about this by protesting for the resignation of this Juffali guy.I think the opposition is too quiet on this matter as this will be the defining moment for this regime come next election. The walls are crumbling down on this government as America and Britain are watching very closely what this PM and his government are doing with this whole Jufalli and IMPACS affair. Where are the protection and rights for women and their children when it comes to divorce.

    (57)(0)

    • The Opposition United Workers Party has done it's part in strongly opposing this appointment. The Saint Lucian people are too passive in allowing Kenny Anthony to do as he pleases. By now Saint Lucians should do what they have to.

      (31)(2)

  7. Another contradictory statement by the PM because clearly you don't care if the man attends one meeting and clearly accountability means nothing to this government . The man even hired his daughter which makes me wonder who works for who ?? Look now it is rumored that Mr juffali has cancer so i am guessing if that is true he will still have st.lucia's best interest ,and continue to represent and work for st.lucians on behalf of the st.lucian government . Put your ego aside and please listen to the cries and take us away from all this embarrassment if you really care for st.lucia Mr PM ,because all i can see is you covering up something for a simple issue like taking immunity away, you must beat around the bush like your step program hmmm .

    (18)(2)

  8. I hope u all are following the CIP in Antigua of all what it attracts Kenny and company are out to sell st lucia for are quick buck.

    (36)(1)

  9. Can anyone please tell me why was it the Hon Eldridge Stephen never attended an IMO meeting during his 2007 to 2011 posting as High Commissioner??

    THE UWP OPERATORS CAN DISLIKE 1000 TIMES.....

    (5)(58)

    • What's good for the goose should be good for the gander. I guess it's the other party so it's Ok. Maybe one of the "sky is falling" doomsayers on this board will take a crack at your question above.

      (2)(3)

  10. What baffles me most is that this PM has NEVER given any explanation for Juffali's failure to attend any of the scheduled 19 IMO meetings since assuming his post as our permanent representative to that organization.

    Apparently we're not worth an explanation I assume. It's time to put petty politics and political colours aside.

    This concerns every St.Lucian and questions need to be asked. This foolishness Kenny has been spinning is nothing more than an effort to blindside the population and avoid facing the music for his actions.

    (26)(2)

    • Well he's never given an explanation for Juffali's appointment in the first place, so it's not surprising that he wouldn't comment on non-attendance.

      (1)(0)

  11. Kenny please!

    You still haven't explained why his appointment was not gazetted.

    You still have not told us why his appointment was done in the bowels of secrecy.

    You still have not told us why he was appointed to the IMO ...as far as I know he has a Phd in neuroscience and NO expertise in maritime affairs...

    You also still have not told us why it is OK for a diplomat to shun his responsibilities and is still being allowed to invoke immunity.

    That is the most baffling aspect! He has NOT performed the duties of his role as diplomat. Why are you Kenny Anthony not outraged? Why is it OK for a foreign national to disrespect our position on the IMO by not performing ANY of his duties but yet still he is allowed to use the immunity which cones with the role when in two years he has NOT attended ONE meeting???

    Are you therefore suggesting that the rich are allowed to do as they feel with our reputation because they may have dropped a few coins in a few pockets?

    I hope y'all government workers paying attention. I hope you guys know this means you too can shun your duties and receive no reprimand from your minister. After all if diplomats can shun their responsibility and still be allowed benefits why cant you not go to work and continue to get paid?

    I mean.....

    (91)(2)

    • With reference to your last paragraph, this is exactly what obtains in the public service now with most of them...Last I checked

      (8)(3)

  12. You avoiding the real questions well.

    While you'll offer reasons for not lifting the immunity , none of us are sure as to the real reason for his appointment that got us here in the first place.
    Yeah yeah, you have said it is because he can attract investors. But of course if I am a billionaire and business man , of course I can attract business. But is that why he was approached????? In fact who approach who?????
    But isn't it funny when you look at the time lines that his appointment just appears to be strategic?????

    How then can you expect me to believe that proper due diligence will be conducted on prospective CIP "citizens?????"

    (86)(2)

    • Also, if the individual is terminally Ill as it was reported, why hasn't he been relieved of his duties to allow him to attend to his health? Will we continue to remain absent while he is battle with cancer??

      (16)(3)

    • Does anyone seriously believe that the UK Government give a rat's ass about a divorce case in London.
      What worries them is that a Saudi national now has diplomatic immunity to cause whatever trouble he wants to in the UK with no comeback.

      Has everyone forgotten that the 9/11 bombers in New York & Washington were Saudi nationals.
      The UK, EU & USA are having to bare the brunt of trying to stop ISIS. Why is Kenny Anthony seemingly doing all he can to alienate St Lucia's traditional allies. Does he really want ISIS to gain a foothold in the Caribbean.

      All his talk of CIP is total crap. Where are these investors going to come from? Obviously the Middle East and Russia.

      He talks of hotel investment - How many more all inclusive hotels which do next to nothing for the people who don't work there do we need. Vendors, Restaurant & bar owners are already suffering economically when there are already derelict half built hotels & malls throughout the island.

      Just what is this man trying to prove. He wants closer links with Venezuela which pisses off the USA.

      People please get real. This man is not only looking out for himself & his cronies but is incredibly dangerous for all the Caribbean & St Lucia particularly.

      One last question. The Taiwanese government have invested heavily here in what appears to be very good causes but exactly what do they get back.

      (20)(1)

      • I don't think people realize that some of these countries namely the UK and the US might start to question how we go about business that might indirectly affect their borders. We might never know the true reason for his appointment. For all we know it could have been an appointment made on good grounds.
        However one cannot ignore the timelines of certain events surrounding Juffali's appointment which leaves room for speculation in the absence of information.
        We are arguing about the lifting of the immunity, we are told that the man is a billionaire and he loves St.Lucia.
        BUT
        Look at the recent removal of the visa waiver in St.Kitts, Canadian politicians exposing the Douglas administration in St.Kitts for its poor administration of CIP, the Chinese/ Antiguan citizen wanted by China, the Iranian business man who purchased a St.Kitts and Nevis passport for US 1 million etc etc.
        Now put all of this against the Juffali affair with respect to WHY or on what grounds he was appointed given the timelines and certain events and St.Lucia's recent implementation of the CIP and tell me if countries such as the US, UK and Canada would not be scrutinizing us more closely.
        Most persons might be quick to respond, tell the US mind their business etc. But it is their business if friendly governments like ours introduce measures that could possibly make it easier for potential crooks to enter their borders.

        (11)(0)

  13. YOU MR. PM ARE BEHAVING LIKE A TYPICAL LAWYER, MORE CONCERNED ABOUT PRECEDENT THAN DOING WHAT IS RIGHT. FROM MY ANGLE IT APPEARS MORE LIKE YOU ARE PROTECTING THE SECRET AGREEMENT MADE WITH JUFFALI. YOU HAVE NOT EXPRESSED ANY CONCERN IN REGARDS TO JUFFALI USING SAINT LUCIA TO PROTECT HIS WEALTH. WERE YOU AWARE OF HIS INTENSIONS IF NOT WHY IS THE OUTRAGE THAT MOST SAINT LUCIANS ARE EXPRESSING ABSENT FROM YOUR EXPRESSIONS? DO YOU REALLY THINK THAT ALL THIS NEGATIVE ATTENTION IS COOL? WELL IT IS NOT!

    (58)(2)

  14. Mr.PM, To most Saint Lucians what Juffali did may not be a criminal act as defined by the criminal laws and courts but it sure rigs of alleged deceit and corruption. It is a grave violation against the reputation and future standing of Saint Lucia on the world stage.

    Are you saying that in all the years of diplomatic privileges this Juffali Affair is so unprecedented in nature that it will help guide future decisions?The foreign press are implying that only alleged bankrupt or corrupt governments would entertain such misuse of diplomatic privileges.

    Shouldn't the right precedent be set here? What about the future misuse of diplomatic immunity that could result from your decision not to revoke Juffali's immunity. SAINT LUCIANS KNOW BETTER. AGAIN MR.

    (80)(0)

  15. What contributation has he made to St Lucia? Financial or otherwise.

    What is his reason for not giving his recent ex-wife and daughter a settlement as is normal in divorce cases?

    His wedding to his most recent wife is estimated to have cost $10million.  One of her wedding gowns cost $300,000, her diamond necklace $3million, guests were flown in to Venice for the celebration on private jets etc.

    I know it's his buisness how much he spends on his wedding celebration.  But to have spent $10,000,000 on his wedding celebration and so far it seems he has contributed $Zero to St Lucia.  
    What's it all about?

    (19)(0)

  16. The issue is we do not trust Kenny because of the way he operates. His style of business is done in the dark and we only get to know when a bubble bursts.

    ROACHMEL, GRYNBERG, HELENITES, LAMBIRDS AND NOW JUFFALI. KDA needs to be honest and upfront and inform us of things he is doing for the country. He is working for us and not us for him. The back to front and secret style of operations only brings mistrust. So who believes him when he tries to make amends.

    We only got to hear of Jufalli courtesy of the british press. Why? Then he runs like a sad sack priest to confess what the British already told us.

    But even then he gives us what he wants. This is not the way to do business as is we who put him there and he must show respect for us the people and do not take us for his pappyshow. St. Lucia is not his kitchen garden.

    Who is running the country? Is it a government of St. Lucia OR A St. Lucia Labour Party Government OR an elitist group of the St. Lucia Labour Party. But just now he will come like humble pie to beg for our votes. We will sing him SO LONG FAREWELL from Sound of Music

    (26)(0)

    • You are sadly mistaken. He is not doing for. Replace that word for, and instead insert the word "to." Only the "better days" idiots, are too punch drunk to realize that the eggs are not only dripping down the face of this unhinged administration, but also on every person, born and bred calling themselves Saint Lucian.

      (6)(0)

  17. I applaud you Dr. Anthony. Don't accede to the wishes of those foreign bullies. Right is right. The man is a diplomat, he should be afforded his rights and immunities with the title. Brilliant!

    (3)(37)

  18. So th PM is choosing Juffali over the people of St. Lucia. When Britain close it doors and Juffali does not deliver, will it be worth it. You make a man that knows nothing about St. Lucia a diplomat. Citizens by investment is one thing, diplomat is an other. He became a citizen and diplomat without the St. Lucian public knowing nothing about it. One should not become a citizen before any public investment. What do the people of St. Lucia hsve to show for it. Does that means China owns half of St. Lucia.

    (48)(0)

    • If the UK allowing us to loose our little 2% of the Banana market is not its doors being closed I want to know what is ? If its failure to apologise to us for its role in the west Indian slave trade is not its doors being closed I want to know what is?

      The government's refusal to capitulate is not choosing Juffali over the British. It is protecting its dignity in the face of what may amount to blackmail. The British has presented nothing to suggest that Juffali has committed a crime against the state. The complainant is a private citizen. The British is asking St Lucia to break all protocols; go against all precedents just to satisfy the desire of a private citizen. The government don't want to be the first to do so. If the country were to do so the rest of the world would look to it as no less than a traitor because it could severely affect the security of the immunity of their diplomats operating in foreign countries. That would york the country to the UK in all undesirable ways. Clinton's advise was to take your begging basket round the world not just England. If England wants to be excluded from the list of countries whose doors St Lucia can knock so be it but the least it can do is give St Lucia the right and freedom to protect its dignity when, where and how it sees fit.

      (6)(4)

      • Couldn't have said it any better. If the Vatican can give the guy one of it's most prestigious awards even he is not of same faith. Also he has received numerous recognition for his philanthropic work around the globe from various organization and countries, even Britain included. Why the held can't we do the same. Maybe people should look up the guys bio before all the ranting coming out of some of the statements on this board.
        There have been instances where the British has done exactly what they are accusing this government of doing. They have even protected individuals with no diplomatic immunity.
        All these bellicose statements coming from the same individuals on this board that voted for a bunch of leaderless idiots some 7years ago which started our beloved country down this path. Our memories seem to be short, and sporadic....e were the laughing stock of the Caribbean. I did not hear all the ranting's from them during this time.
        I'm not a big fan of those in power at this time, but I surely would not like to relieve this nightmare of 7 years ago, bringing this same bunch of rejects back to power. This is akin to repeating the same mistakes over and over and hoping to get better results...."the definition of insanity.
        For those bring up Ginsberg and so on..,. This can go both ways, I'm still waiting to find out where all the Taiwanese monies went. I'm sure if you look around , you might see examples of where it went.

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