UK res­i­dent to chal­lenge Saint Lu­cian gov­ern­ment in Bri­tish high court

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL -

Passed in 1948, the Bri­tish Na­tion­al­ity Act states: “Ev­ery per­son born within the United King­dom and Colonies af­ter the com­mence­ment of this Act shall be a cit­i­zen of the United King­dom and Colonies by birth.” This act ap­plies to Saint Lu­cia, once a mem­ber of the Bri­tish West In­dies.

Wade Ga­jad­har was born in Saint Lu­cia on Novem­ber 7, 1961 and lives in Mid­dles­bor­ough, Eng­land. He told the that he has lived in the UK for close to ten years. Re­cently he ap­plied for and was de­nied a Bri­tish pass­port, he said. Now he is in the process of chal­leng­ing the Saint Lu­cian gov­ern­ment in the High Court in Lon­don, on the le­gal­ity of the “Saint Lu­cia Mod­i­fi­ca­tions of En­act­ments Or­der” of 1978, which out­lines the changes to cit­i­zen­ship which came with In­de­pen­dence.

It reads in part: “Any per­son who im­me­di­ately be­fore the ap­pointed day is a cit­i­zen of the United King­dom and Colonies shall on that day cease to be such a cit­i­zen if he be­comes on that day a cit­i­zen of Saint Lu­cia.”

It goes on to state that the per­son would not cease to be a UK cit­i­zen if “he, his father, or his father’s father” was born in the UK or a ter­ri­tory, was nat­u­ral­ized or was reg­is­tered as a cit­i­zen of the UK. Mr. Ga­jad­har ar­gues that there was no in­for­ma­tion forth­com­ing at the time that per­sons would lose their right to Bri­tish cit­i­zen­ship and there­fore it should be deemed in­valid.

“I didn’t even know that I lost my sta­tus,” said Mr. Ga­jad­har. “I was born un­der the Bri­tish flag, when Saint Lu­cia was a ter­ri­tory. The out­come I’m look­ing for is to make that or­der in­valid be­cause all facts were not pro­vided to the Saint Lu­cian elec­torate.”

He con­tin­ued: “I’m quite sure the judges will find that I have a point be­cause you can­not with­out my au­thor­ity give away my sta­tus as a Bri­tish cit­i­zen and make me only a Saint Lu­cian cit­i­zen; I didn’t know about that.

“What I’m do­ing is not for me alone, it’s for ev­ery­body through­out the Caribbean.”

Mr. Ga­jad­har in­tends to file the case next month and is con­fi­dent of vic­tory. Then again, is it not writ­ten some­where that ig­no­rance of the law is no ex­cuse?

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Saint Lucia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.