Saint Lucia. In the spring, the Government of Saint Lucia
began preparations to leave the Privy Council in London as
the country's highest court and replace it with the regional
court of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ). However,
heavy votes were opposed to the change and felt that a
referendum should be carried out. Saint Lucia joined and
formed CCJ in 2005 together with eight other countries
within the CARICOM partner organization. The Court, which
has its seat in Trinidad and Tobago, had 15 members in 2013.
CCJ serves both as the highest court for member states and
as a court for issues related to CARICOM's internal market,
such as trade disputes.
Countryaah, Lawyer Evans Calderon, who took part in the legal
discussions in connection with Saint Lucia's independence
from Britain in 1979, argued that the constitution of the
country must be changed and that a referendum is needed to
decide whether the country should replace the Privy Council
with the CCJ. Calderon himself is against the change.
According to the CCJ, the authorities in Saint Lucia do not
have to carry out a referendum on the matter. The small
party of the Lucian People's Movement (LPM) urged both the
ruling Saint Lucia workers 'party and the large opposition
party United Workers' Party not to make the CCJ the highest
judicial body without allowing the residents to vote in the
matter. The government pointed out that a referendum might
be too expensive for the country.