Thursday 27th December, 2018-Prime Minister Gaston Browne has expressed sorrow at the passing of legal luminary Sir Fenton Ramsahoye.
The head of government is quoted as saying:
“One of our distinguished Knights has fallen and we in Antigua and Barbuda join his family, friends and admirers throughout the Caribbean in mourning his passing.”
Prime Minister Browne recalled Ramsahoye’s distinguished legal career, adding “Sir Fenton will be remembered with respect and admiration by a generation of Caribbean attorneys who benefitted from his knowledge and willingness to share it.”
“He was an erudite scholar of the law and defended his clients with unfailing commitment,” Mr. Browne added.
Dr. Ramsahoye, Guyanese born and British trained, was a Queen’s Counsel and served as Guyana’s first native Attorney General from 1961-1964 and is also known for his legal work in Guyana, the BVI and throughout the Eastern Caribbean.
In Antigua, many will remember him as being on the legal team for then Leader of the Opposition, Baldwin Spencer in 1997, whose appeal was heard by the Eastern Caribbean Court of Appeal in the Asian Village matter.
Mr. Spencer had contended in part that a declaration that an agreement which commenced on 23 February 1997 between the Government of Antigua and Barbuda and Asian Village Antigua Limited for the development of an area on the west coast of Antigua, was unconstitutional, illegal null and void and damages for fraud and conspiracy and misdemeanour in public office and other relief, the said damages to be paid to him for the benefit of the people of Antigua and Barbuda.
The Court of Appeal at the end of the matter ruled against Mr. Spencer.
Former Guyana House Speaker, Senior Counsel Ralph Ramkarran said he was saddened at the passing of Ramsahoye who pioneered “a great deal” of constitutional developments in the Caribbean through legal victories at the British Privy Council.
In 2016, Dr. Fenton Ramsahoye was knighted by Sir James Carlisle for outstanding legal work.
He died this morning in Barbados at the age of 89 years.