Inside the States
Next Deputy Bailiff, William Bailhache
The Bailiff's brother is appointed Deputy Bailiff.
It may have been controversial when William Bailhache became Attorney General a few years ago.
He insisted there was no conflict of interest in his appointment then when his brother Sir Phillip was Bailiff.
It set him on the path towards becoming Bailiff himself one day and yesterday it was announced he would follow in his older brother's footsteps and become Deputy Bailiff.
Current Bailiff, Sir Philip Bailhache
In the States yesterday, Sir Philip Bailhache said: “The government house has announced that the Queen has approved the appointment of Mr William Bailhache as Deputy Baliff in succession to me.”
This was met by foot-stamping by the majority of States members, but Senator Stuart Syvret had this to add.
Senator Syvret said: “I may be alone, but can I say that I think that is a reprehensible decision.”
William Bailhache himself brushed off the criticism from Senator Stuart Syvret.
He said: “I am sure in public life you are always going to make some friends and you are going to upset some people as well.”
Senator Stuart Syvret
With a few exceptions it's traditional for the Deputy Bailiff to go on to become the Bailiff and William Bailhache says that it is indeed his ambition.
So even if William Bailhache isn't concerned about his critics - how does he feel about the debate over whether it's appropriate to move from being the island's Chief Prosecutor to become judge and presiding officer over the States Assembly? Well - he's quite sanguine about that as well
He said: “Much is made of the dual role. In practice it is not a problem that arises as well. In my experience the judges make sure they do not preside over cases where the States have been considering the matter an issue. It is a theoretical rather than a practical problem.”
But what about the challenge of keeping sometimes unruly politicians in line.
The next Bailiff, Michael Birt
"I think the important thing with all people, whether you are in court or in the States, is to try and approach things objectively, courteously and fairly. If you take that approach, it will be respected," Mr Bailhache concluded.
The current Attorney General William Bailhache will take up his new role as Deputy Bailiff in November.
It's usual practise to cease being involved in criminal matters three months before changing roles, although Mr Bailhache says he will continue on those cases he's already closely involved in.
And William Bailhache says he hopes in the fullness of time to follow in his brother's, Sir Phillip Bailhache's footsteps and become the island's Bailiff.
last updated: 11/06/2009 at 12:56
Have Your Say