It is essential that Barbados has a full-time Attorney-General. This was pointed out by acting Prime Minister Freundel Stuart, as he answered queries from the media concerning the recent appointment of Government back-bencher, Adriel Brathwaite, to the Cabinet. His comments were made at the close of the 31st Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government (CARICOM), held at the Rose Hall Resort in Montego Bay.
Mr. Stuart said: "On previous occasions, when I have acted as Prime Minister, the responsibilities for the office of the Attorney-General had been assigned to the Minister of Housing and Lands, Michael Lashley. He is substantively an officer of the Crown, so all that had to happen constitutionally is that the responsibilities, [which were] formally mine, were assigned to him."
The acting Prime Minister maintained the reasons for the appointment were straightforward. He stated: "In times past, when Mr. Lashley has acted, it was because the Prime Minister was going to be away for short periods and I would have been acting in that capacity for short periods. The issue of Barbados having a part time Attorney-General for two full months, does not make sense. It certainly does not accord with the priority the government has set itself. So, we thought that we would allow Mr. Lashley to fully devote himself to the issues with which he is dealing, and with programmes that are critical to both the success and the face of the government – that is the housing programme.
"Therefore, it was thought wise that we appoint an Attorney-General who could give full attention to the requirements of that office; because, quite frankly, it is a very difficult office. Practically everything that happens in Barbados passes across the desk of the Attorney-General, and, therefore, the idea of having a part time AG, for two months, certainly does not make sense," he stressed. email@example.com