Dominica’s Attorney General reveals 6 acts and 8 bills/regulations will soon be brought before Parliament
Dominica’s Attorney General Levi Peter reveals six (6) acts and eight (8) bills/regulations will soon be brought before Parliament for discussion and approval. He made that announcement at a press conference on Friday May 6, 2016. However, Mr Peter did not disclose precisely when these pieces of legislation would be presented to Parliament. The last sitting of Parliament was in November 2015.
These Acts and Bills include the Incitement Act, Child Sexual Offences Amendment Act, Firearms Act, Public Order Act, Riot Act, Legal Professions Act, Proceeds of Crime Amendment Bill, Money Laundering Prevention Amendment Bill, Tourism Standards Regulation, Geothermal Bill, Child Justice Bill, Children Care and Adoption Bill, Status of Children Bill and the Medical Professions Bill. According to Peter, the Incitement Act is necessary, because in his words, “I find that I hear too much incitement, particularly on the airwaves”.
Mr Peter said he Firearms Act will be reviewed, because “government proceeded to parliament in 2011 and passed a Firearms Act that repealed the previous Firearm Act, making it clear that firearm offenses should be treated with far more serious significance and consequence.
He noted that the consequences of possession were more than doubled in 2011, but it doesn’t seem like that is being reflected. “It is important that we as a nation grapple with that because firearms are not toys, and were created not to harm, but to kill.”
He added that there are other minor, but important amendments, that will also be brought before parliament, including the Proceeds of Crime Amendment Bill, and the Money Laundering Prevention Amendment Bill.
“These are relatively small, but they are important amendments to those two pieces of legislations,” which are intended to bring Dominica in conformity with international requirements.
The Public Order Act and Riot Act are also down for Parliament’s revision.
“The Public Order Act that is envisaged is one that would bring together elements of both the Riot Act and the Public Order Act under one act, and more adequately cover the more relevant situations introduce in new statutory offenses,” the AG explained. He noted further that there is a draft of that bill, which has to be approved by Cabinet before “it gets out into the public arena”.
The Tourism Standards Regulation and the Geothermal Bill, which is not crime-related, will also be tabled in Parliament soon.
“There is also the Child Justice, Children Care and Adoption and Status of Children bills which are family related bills, and those are expected to find their way to parliament later this year”.
Another bill which the AG says he is determined to have tabled in Parliament before the end of the year, is the Legal Professions Act, which will regulate the legal profession and its officers.
“There is also the Medical Professions bill, which is a comprehensive bill to address the medical profession, that would include medical practitioners such as doctors, nurses and the medical practitioners in different categories,” Mr Peter concluded.
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