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Grenadian attorney Derick Sylvester appointed judge in Belize

Posted: Sunday, December 10, 2023. 10:41 am CST.

By Horace Palacio: According to information obtained from EIN News, seasoned Grenadian attorney-at-law Derick Sylvester is set to begin his tenure as a High Court Judge in Belize on January 8. This significant appointment was confirmed by Ruggles Ferguson, King’s Counsel, following an announcement at the Grenada Bar Association’s (GBA) recent Christmas gathering.

Sylvester, who resigned as President of the GBA effective December 31st, is poised to embark on this new chapter in early January. Ferguson, who has previously worked with Sylvester at Ciboney Chambers in St. George, highlighted that this transition marks a new and different experience for Sylvester. However, he expressed confidence in Sylvester’s preparedness for the role, citing his hard work, discipline, and dedication as key attributes that will aid him on the bench.

With over two decades in the legal field and a recent two-year stint as President of the GBA, Sylvester’s experience as a legal advocate is seen as a strong foundation for his judicial duties. Ferguson described Sylvester as someone who brings energy and commitment to his endeavors, anticipating that he will successfully complete what he starts.

This move to the bench is viewed by Ferguson as a timely and well-considered decision, aligning with Sylvester’s long-held aspiration to become a judge. Sylvester’s appointment is particularly notable as he is the first Grenadian to be appointed to the High Court bench in Belize, a country not part of the Eastern Caribbean Court system but with its own court and part of the appellate jurisdiction of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ).

Ferguson also pointed out Sylvester’s extensive experience, including appearances in all courts involving Grenada and the London-based Privy Council. This background is expected to serve him well in his judicial role, particularly in delivering timely and quality judgments.

Beyond his judicial duties, Sylvester is anticipated to significantly contribute to the development of justice administration in Belize. His experience in the OECS and as President of the Grenada Bar, according to Ferguson, equips him with fresh ideas that could benefit Belize’s judiciary and legal community.

Sylvester, a graduate of the Sir Hugh Wooding Law School in Trinidad & Tobago, has had a diverse legal career. After earning his law degree in 2001, he joined Seon & Associates, then Ciboney Chambers, and later established his own law firm. His roles have extended beyond the legal sphere, having served as Chairman of the Public Service Commission, Director of several Grenadian authorities, and member of various committees and boards, including the Grenada Football Association Disciplinary Committee and the Grenada Medical Association’s Disciplinary Committee.

Sylvester’s appointment is a significant milestone for both him and the legal communities of Grenada and Belize, reflecting his dedication and skill in the field of law.

 

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