by Robert A Emmanuel (Antigua Observer) Attorneys for St Peter MP, Asot Michael, have issued an official response to the Speaker of the House, Sir Gerald Watt, calling the decision to suspend him for three consecutive sittings of Parliament “unlawful” and “unconstitutional”.
In a letter dated May 22, Hugh Marshall Jr wrote to the Speaker laying out their legal arguments.
The lawyers claimed that the House had no power to make standing orders providing for the suspension of a member. They said even if the House did have authority to make such rules, it had no power to make them to suspend a member for three or more sittings.
They also argued that the suspension was “imposed for the improper purpose of punishing our client and was not reasonably required for the regulation of the affairs and proceedings of the House”. They added that the suspension was “not effected in accordance with the mandatory procedural steps”.