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The Bahamas Independence Order 1973

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Tenure of office of Justices of Appeal

102.—(1) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (4) to (7) (inclusive) of this Article, a Justice of Appeal shall hold office until he attains the age of sixty-eight years:

Provided that the Governor-General, acting on the recommendation of the Prime Minister after consultation with the Leader of the Opposition, may permit a Justice of Appeal who attains the age of sixty-eight years to continue in office until he has attained such later age, not exceeding seventy years, as may (before the Justice of Appeal has attained the age of sixty-eight years) have been agreed between them.

(2) Notwithstanding that he has attained the age at which he is required by or under the provisions of this Article to vacate his office, a person holding the office of Justice of Appeal may, with the permission of the Governor-General, acting in accordance with the advice of the Prime Minister, continue in office for such period after attaining that age as may be necessary to enable him to deliver judgment or to do any other thing in relating to proceedings that were commenced before him before he attained that age.

(3) Nothing done by a Justice of Appeal shall be invalid by reason only that he has attained the age at which he is required by this Article to vacate his office.

(4) A Justice of Appeal may be removed from office only for inability to discharge the functions of his office (whether arising from infirmity of body or mind or any other cause) or for misbehaviour, and shall not be so removed except in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (5) of this Article.

(5) A Justice of Appeal shall be removed from office by the Governor-General by instrument under the Public Seal if the question of the removal of that Justice of Appeal from the office has, at the request of the Governor-General made in pursuance of paragraph (6) of this Article, been referred by Her Majesty to the Judicial Committee of Her Majesty's Privy Council and the Judicial Committee has advised Her Majesty that the Justice of Appeal ought to be removed from office for inability as aforesaid or for misbehaviour.

(6) If the Prime Minister (in the case of the President of the Court of Appeal) or the President of the Court of Appeal or the Chief Justice after consultation with the Prime Minister (in the case of any other Justice of Appeal) represents to the Governor-General that the question of removing a Justice of Appeal from office for inability as aforesaid or for misbehaviour ought to be investigated, then—

(a)the Governor-General shall appoint a tribunal, which shall consist of a Chairman and not less than two other members, selected by the Governor-General acting in accordance with the advice of the Prime Minister (in the case of the President of the Court of Appeal) or of the President of the Court of Appeal (in the case of any other Justice of Appeal) from among persons who hold or have held high judicial office;

(b)that tribunal shall enquire into the matter and report on the facts thereof to the Governor-General and recommend to the Governor-General whether he should request that the question of the removal of that Justice of Appeal should be referred by Her Majesty to the Judicial Committee; and

(c)if the tribunal so recommends, the Governor-General shall request that the question should be referred accordingly.

(7) The provisions of the Commissions of Inquiry Act(1) as in force immediately before the appointed day shall, subject to the provisions of this Article, apply as nearly as may be in relation to tribunals appointed under paragraph (6) of this Article or, as the context may require, to the members thereof as they apply in relation to Commissions or Commissioners appointed under that Act, and for that purpose shall have effect as if they formed part of this Constitution.

(8) If the question of removing a Justice of Appeal from office has been referred to a tribunal appointed under paragraph (6) of this Article, the Governor-General acting in accordance with the advice of the Prime Minister (in the case of the President of the Court of Appeal) or of the President of the Court of Appeal after the President of the Court of Appeal has consulted with the Prime Minister (in the case of any other Justice of Appeal), may suspend the Justice of Appeal from performing the functions of his office.

(9) Any such suspension may at any time be revoked by the Governor-General, acting in accordance with the advice of the Prime Minister or the President of the Court of Appeal (as the case may be), and shall in any case cease to have effect if—

(a)the tribunal recommends to the Governor-General that he should not request that the question of the removal of the Justice of Appeal from office should be referred by Her Majesty to the Judicial Committee; or

(b)the Judicial Committee advises Her Majesty that the Justice of Appeal ought not to be removed from office.

(10) The provisions of this Article shall be without prejudice to the provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 101 of this Constitution.

(11) The provisions of this Article and of Article 103 of this Constitution shall not apply to the Chief Justice.

(1)

Statute Law of the Bahama Islands, Revised Edition 1965, Cap. 180.

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