JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Ministry of Justice, through the Justice Undertakings for Social Transformation (JUST) Programme, has officially launched the Office of Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) Prosecutor’s Manual for Jamaica.
  • Speaking at the launch held on January 19 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, Justice Minister, Senator the Hon. Mark Golding, said the manual represents a significant achievement for the Jamaican justice system.
  • Prior to the publication of the Prosecutor’s Manual, two protocols were launched, the ‘Decision to Prosecute’ and the ‘Obligation to Disclose’.

The Ministry of Justice, through the Justice Undertakings for Social Transformation (JUST) Programme, has officially launched the Office of Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) Prosecutor’s Manual for Jamaica.

The manual will help to promote transparency, consistency and fairness in decision making, outline basic criteria that are applied by prosecutors when considering to prosecute a case, as well as remind the public prosecutor of his or her duty to be fair, independent and objective.

Speaking at the launch held on January 19 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, Justice Minister, Senator the Hon. Mark Golding, said the manual represents a significant achievement for the Jamaican justice system.

“To have a document (of this nature) developed and published so that those who (created) it can be held (accountable) by the standards they have set for themselves is an important step forward for governance in the country,” he said.

The Justice Minister also used the opportunity to express gratitude to the Canadian and British governments, for their support to the justice reform process; more so to the Canadian government for funding and technical support provided through the JUST programme.

Prior to the publication of the Prosecutor’s Manual, two protocols were launched, the ‘Decision to Prosecute’ and the ‘Obligation to Disclose’.

Both protocols have been incorporated into the Prosecutor’s Manual, alongside a code of conduct and guidelines related to bail, plea negotiations, as well as direction regarding critical stakeholders such as young offenders, victims, witnesses, judges, jurors, police, media, other investigators and attorneys.

Meanwhile, Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Paula Llewellyn, invited all prosecutors and other users of the manual to provide continued input to guard against obsolescence (irrelevance).

“This manual exemplifies that we at the Office of the DPP recognise that it is important for the justice system in Jamaica… to show that progress in being made in the prosecuting services and our thinking and professionalism in the 21st century,” she said.

Additionally, Chief Justice, Justice Zaila McCalla said the implementation of the principles and procedures in “the manual will engender public confidence in a fair, transparent and consistent justice system.”

The JUST programme provides up to CAN$20 million to support the Government of Jamaica with the implementation of the Justice Reform Agenda.

Canada’s assistance is aimed at improving the mechanisms and business processes of the main justice sector institutions.