Sooknanan v The Medical Council of Guyana

JurisdictionCaribbean States
CourtCaribbean Court of Justice
JudgeWit, J. CCJ.
Judgment Date28 Nov 2014
Docket NumberCCJ Application No. GYCV 7 of 2014; GY Civil Appeal No. 32 of 2008

Caribbean Court of Justice

Wit, J. CCJ.; Hayton, J. CCJ.; Anderson, J. CCJ.

CCJ Application No. GYCV 7 of 2014; GY Civil Appeal No. 32 of 2008

The Medical Council of Guyana

Sir Fenton Ramsahoye, SC and Ms. Jamela A. Ali for the applicant.

Mr. Kamal Ramkarran for the respondent.

Civil Practice and Procedure - Application for special leave to appeal — Res judicata — Whether the principle of res judicata applied where the decision making body had made a decision which had been quashed due to procedural grounds — Remarks on res judicata — Application for special leave refused.

Wit, J. CCJ.

This application filed by the applicant, a Medical Practitioner, is for special leave to appeal a judgment of the Court of Appeal dated 31st July 2014. After an investigation into a complaint concerning the applicant's patient who had died on 13th October 2003, the Medical Council of Guyana invited the applicant to appear before it, heard him and concluded that he had “demonstrated gross negligence in the management of the patient as well as gross professional misconduct in shirking [his] duty to have proper reports submitted on this case”. Accordingly, the Medical Council decided, on 4th August 2006, to erase the applicant's name from the Register of Medical Practitioners.


In judicial review proceedings before a Judge of the High Court this decision was quashed for the reason that the Medical Council had taken into consideration a report by an “independent obstetrician and gynaecologist” without affording the applicant an opportunity to study the report and to react to its contents. The Medical Council consented to the quashing order and subsequently invited the applicant to a rehearing of the matter, an invitation that triggered further judicial review proceedings by the applicant in which he was successful at first instance but unsuccessful in the subsequent appeal. It is this judgment of the Court of Appeal that the applicant now seeks to appeal.


The scope of the proposed appeal has been narrowed down in this Application. The sole legal issue placed before this Court is whether the Medical Council, a statutory disciplinary body, after having heard and determined a complaint against a Practitioner, would be entitled to conduct a second disciplinary hearing against that same Practitioner and for the same alleged professional misconduct where its earlier determinations have been quashed in judicial review proceedings for...

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