The country’s Judiciary reached a major milestone with its opening on Friday, June 24, of the Bahamas Judicial Education Institute’s (BJEI) Training Centre. The newly commissioned training centre will be instrumental in fulfilling the need for preparation of judicial officers and their staff, and thereby enhance the delivery of justice in the country.
Creation of the training centre was facilitated by a loan from the Inter-American Development Bank and executed through the Ministry of National Security via its Citizen Security & Justice Programme (CSJP). The commissioning ceremony was held at the Bahamas Judicial Education Institute, Charlotte House, downtown. In attendance were: Chief Justice Sir Brian Moree, Minister of National Security the Hon. Wayne Munroe, and Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Senator the Hon. Ryan Pinder. Also in attendance were Justices Ian Winder, Bernard Turner and Loren Klein; and President of the Bahamas Bar Association Khalil Parker, and CSJP Project Manager, Dr. Dorcas Cox.
Delivering the opening address was Chairman, BJEI, Justice Ian Winder, who said that although training requirements have always been met, accommodations have always been less than ideal: “This is a new facility equipped with modern furniture, plug and play devices, laptops, state-of-the-art audio/visual equipment and modern kitchen facilities to accommodate catering requirements.” He thanked the Chief Justice for making the facility a top priority during his tenure and also thanked the Attorney General and the Minister of National Security for
Chief Justice Sir Brian Moree said that the opening of the facility marks an important step in improving the country’s judicial system. He added, however, that there is still much more work to be done.
“This is a very important day for the Judiciary of The Bahamas. It is also another important step in improving the court system. Currently, we are at different stages of improving, including the implementation of a case management system, payment system, the automation of the Family Island courts, among other improvements. All of these reforms require extensive training of Judiciary personnel and hands on training, which is needed year-round. This facility will offer that needed training on a regular basis,” he said.
Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Senator the Hon. Ryan Pinder said the centre is supported by both the Bahamas Bar Association and the Office of the Attorney General and is in keeping with the objective of advocating for continuing education for attorneys as a requirement to maintain licenses to practice law in good standing.
“To support this initiative, we can expand the offerings at the Eugene Dupuch Law School. They have the infrastructure and can design the necessary curriculum,” he said. “I encourage the Hon. Mr. Justice Ian Winder as BJEI Chairman, to engage with the Law school to assist in the design and implementation of the curriculum for the continuing education of the judiciary, and I certainly would do the same to the Bar Council as they look to develop their continuing education requirements.”
Minister of National Security the Hon. Wayne Munroe extended congratulations to Chief Justice Moree and Justice Winder for their efforts and said he was excited to be among ‘friends.’ “This initiative is part of Component 3 in the objectives of the CSJP program,” he said. “I am happy to see it come to fruition and I congratulate Chief Justice and Justice Winder for your efforts and execution of this objective.” He also wished the institute success. The opening ceremony concluded with a guided tour.
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