President of the Guyana Bar Association (GBA) Chris Ram has raised some concerns about the manner in which the Commission of Inquiry into the Camp Street riots is proceeding.
Ram raised the concerns after the first day of hearings for the CoI during which two inmates from the prison gave their accounts of what happened in the three day unrest that resulted in the death of 17 inmates
The GBA President speaking to members of the media after the hearing said that he was present in his personal capacity and was “very concerned about it [the CoI].”
“I don’t know if the witness was told before – that he had a right to counsel but I certainly believe he ought to have been told,” said Ram who noted that the “the Commission of enquiry act is very specific that every person affected by a Commission of Inquiry has a right to counsel and it cannot be denied.”
He indicated too there were other concerns pointing out that some of the questions were leading questions “that ought not to have been framed the way they were framed so I am pretty concerned.”
Going forward, Ram detailed that the GBA has a vested interest in the COI since the fraternity would be directly affected.
He said that there is actually a discussion whether the GBA should ask for permission to be a part of the COI.
“So that we could appear as a friend of the tribunal but with a right to ask questions and also to object to certain questions being asked,” Ram explained. (Jomo Brusheildon Paul)