Suspended Nauru MPs’ Lawyer Fights Red Tape To Represent Duo

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Suspended Nauru MPs’ Lawyer Fights Red Tape To Represent Duo Australian attorney jumping through many hoops to practice in country

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Aug. 25, 2015) – The lawyer for two Nauru MPs, charged in connection with anti-government protests more than two months ago, is still not able to represent them in court.

Australian based Jay Williams is the lawyer for former president Sprent Dabwido and Squire Jeremiah who have unsuccessfully sought Supreme Court backing to have him allowed into the country after he was denied a visa.

The duo, both opposition MPs who have been suspended from parliament since the middle of last year, have no access to lawyers on Nauru, because the only qualified practitioners work for the government.

Their case is not due to be back in court for four weeks - as is that of another opposition MP, Roland Kun, who is challenging the seizure of his passport in June at the time of the protests.

Mr Kun's lawyer, Australian Georgie Coleman, has been admitted to the Nauru bar, and had had a special purpose visa but has been told she needs a new business visa, costing $US4,400 dollars.

A fourth suspended MP and former justice minister, Mathew Batsiua, facing similar charges, is also seeking to have Jay Williams brought in.

Mr Batsiua's other lawyer, David Lambourne, who is a former secretary of justice in Nauru, has also been stopped by the government from representing him.

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