Providenciaes, 02 Feb 2015 – During debate on the Constitutional Review Commission’s report the nation learned exactly what Minister for Border Control and Labour and Member from North and Middle Caicos thinks of the 2011 Constitution; that it is essentially rubbish. “I have a copy of the constitution here, because it is printed by government with government monies and it is property of the government I wouldn’t destroy it by tearing it up because it would be seen of malicious damage to property. However, Mr Speaker but that is exactly what I think of the document on the whole.”
Hon Donhue Gardiner actually served on the committee overseeing the national consultation leg of the review; but said there now needs to be a referendum to do two things; one determine if TC Islanders want to gain independence from the British and to two, determine if the changes recommended are what the electorate really want. An attorney, Minister Gardiner says he believes the trial by jury right needs to be returned in the constitution as the right solely of the defendant in any case. “I would certainly come down on the side of being in favor for the reinstatement of that right and the right also that he might also have to a bench trial.”
He adamantly expressed that no governor, whom he labeled a virtual stranger should have so much power in the legislative.
On the point of who should make up the members of the House of Assembly, Hon Gardiner has the view that no member of the House should be appointed; that all should be elected by the voting public during a General Election.
“I do not believe in the notion of an elected Speaker from the outside, I believe unless you have been tested at the ballot box you do not have a right to speak on behalf of the people, you do not have a right to vote on behalf of the people, you do not have a right to preside over the People’s House.”