Reform Jersey
Reform Jersey

On 30th April, the States will debate a proposition lodged by Senator Mézec to end the dual role of the Bailiff and establish an elected Speaker, in time for the retirement of the incumbent Bailiff.

Following the announcement made in the States Assembly on Tuesday by the chairman of the Privileges and Procedures Committee that they were unable to reach a decision to bring a proposition to establish an elected Speaker, Senator Sam Mézec has lodged a proposition to enable the States to decide to end the dual role of the Bailiff in time for the retirement of William Bailhache in October.

Senator Mézec had been pressuring the PPC to bring forward proposals since the election last year, whilst a working party had been established to investigate potential options. However, this work reached an impasse this week as no consensus in support of the working party’s proposals emerged.

Reform Jersey party chairman Senator Sam Mézec said - “Numerous reports have been published which have said that it is unhealthy that Jersey does not have an effective separation of powers between the courts and the States, and legal advice provided to the government has indicated that our current system puts us at risk of human rights challenges in the future.”

“The States Assembly has never before had the opportunity for a straightforward vote on establishing an elected Speaker and leaving the Bailiff to focus on his court duties, and now the time has come to make that decision in time for the retirement of the current Bailiff.”

“I hope that the Assembly will take this decision to take our democracy into the 21st century and meet democratic best practices as are well established around the world.”

The amendment is due to be debated in the week of 30th April.