Too many being wrongly denied bail
Stabroek News
February 26, 2002

Dear Editor,

I have had cause on a previous occasion to refer to the unlawful acts being committed on a daily basis by magistrates across the country.

Despite the overcrowding of our prison and the published reports that "one of the greatest problems facing prison systems" including our own, "is the spread of tuberculosis", on a daily basis persons who are presumed innocent and who plead not guilty to bailable offences are unlawfully remanded to prison not because the prosecutor has opposed bail for good and legally acceptable reasons but almost in every case because the presiding magistrate of his/her own volition and 90% of the time with no statement from the prosecutor opposing bail refuses the defendant bail and, I repeat for bailable offences, remands the defendant into custody.

Despite my complaint, both in the press and to the administration this practice continues unabated. The only conclusion I can draw from this is that the administration either approves or at the least condones this flagrant abuse of power.

The time is long overdue for officers of the law to obey the law.

Yours faithfully,

Joseph Eleazar