City uses courts to avert justice

NANAIMO – Re: Judge delays dam injunction hearing, June 11.

To the Editor,

Re: Judge delays dam injunction hearing, June 11.

Regarding city council’s decision to gain a court injunction against those of us opposed to the removal of the dams in Colliery Dam Park, Justice Georgina Quijano (May 28, 2004) noted in her decision not to grant the province an injunction in the occupation of Cathedral Grove  that injunctions may result in the courts being used by special interests to circumvent dealing with legitimate citizens’ complaints.

In her words, it “…may transform a dispute between a citizen and the government into a dispute between the citizen and the court.”

There are many reasons people object to removal of the dams because they oppose further development in our drinking watershed, they fear a reintroduction of the flood plain in Harewood, they oppose the ecological damage from turning habitat for owls, osprey, turtles, crayfish etc., into mud holes or they feel the contracts to study different options should have gone to public tender instead of decided in secret.

If Justice Douglas Thompson grants an injunction, these issues will be ignored and those who actively oppose removal will be guilty of contempt of court.

The use of the court system to subvert justice in the service of special interests is particularly well known to First Nations and environmentalists.

Jim Erkiletian