The Judicial and Legal Services Commission (JLSC), headquartered in St. Lucia, has initiated the selection process to interview potential candidates for the position of Chief Magistrate in Antigua and Barbuda, following the suspension of Chief Magistrate Joanne Walsh.
The suspension was enacted in early July, prompted by the levying of at least ten disciplinary charges against her, which emerged from an investigation into formal complaints lodged against Walsh.
Cabinet Spokesperson Lionel Max Hurst addressed the matter on Thursday, indicating that the JLSC is tasked with evaluating and shortlisting suitable candidates.
He noted that multiple individuals have been interviewed, but the formal announcement has yet to be made.
An acting Chief Magistrate is in place, and additional legal practitioners have been incorporated into the Magistracy to expedite case proceedings, Hurst said.
Legal Affairs Minister Steadroy Benjamin was anticipated to propose a new judge to fulfill the role of Chief Magistrate on an interim basis.
Currently, the post is being managed by an acting Chief Magistrate until a definitive decision is reached.
The responsibility of recommending a fitting candidate to temporarily assume the Chief Magistrate position rests with the Attorney General. This measure ensures the uninterrupted functionality of the magistrate’s court in Antigua and Barbuda.