Report of the Duffus Commission of Inquiry into the Breakdown of Law & Order, and Police Brutality in Grenada


Paragraphs 6 thru 13 - Setting-up of the Commission of Enquiry and related matters

  1. During the last session of the Commission the terms of reference were amended twice:-

    On the 24th of April, the period into which the Commission was to enquire was extended from "November 30, 1973" to "the 26th January, 1974" and on the 2nd of May the period was again extended from the "26th January, 1974" to the 29th March, 1974."

    These extensions added considerably to the work of the Commissioners and all persons concerned and prolonged the hearing. We however do not complain, as the natural sequence of the events occurring after November 30, 1973, made it not only necessary but absolutely essential that there should be a full and diligent enquiry into the events which had taken place. It must be appreciated, however, that the enquiry into these further events of necessity adds to the length of this report and to the time we have had to devote to our findings and recommendations.

  2. The Commissioners were assisted throughout by Mr. Austin Davis, barrister, one of the Assistant Attorneys General of Jamaica, whose services were very kindly placed at the disposal of the Commissioners by the Government of Jamaica, at the request of the Governor of Grenada.

  3. The duties of Secretary to the Commission were most ably performed by Mr. Maudsley James of the Ministry of Finance, Grenada. He was assisted by a team of Stenographer-typists and Radio technicians provided by the Government of Grenada and they carried out their duties cheerfully and competently.

  4. The Commissioners are most grateful to Dame Hilda Bynoe and to you, Sir, for the services of police drivers and orderlies and for the use of Government cars and to the police officers and constables who waited on us. They too performed their duties cheerfully and competently.

  5. The Commissioners desire to express their sincere gratitude to those members of the Grenada Bar who devoted much time and hard work in order to place before the Commission the evidence. Without their help and ready co-operation the Enquiry might have been aborted.

  6. At all times we appreciated the help given by the representatives of the publicity media who were unsparing in their effort to keep the public informed of the proceedings and, finally, we must thank those members of the public who attended the public sittings, even if at times their enthusiasm and interest in the proceedings outweighed their usual quiet charm and reserve.

  7. Schedule B of the First Appendix [Not available for inclusion on this web site] contains a list of those persons who gave evidence. The names are listed in order of appearance. Some of the witnesses testified more than once. A transcript of the evidence given publicly is contained in the eight bound volumes which accompany this report. Unfortunately, there are a few clerical or typing omissions and errors but these are relatively unimportant.

  8. The task of the Commissioners in writing this report has been a very difficult one. When we were asked to undertake the Enquiry it seemed that the task was not difficult and that the evidence to be taken would be concerned only with the arrest by the police of six persons on the 18th November, 1973, with a few related matters antecedent to and subsequent to the arrest. When, however, the terms of reference were amended in December, it became clear that the enquiry would be far reaching and complex. The further extensions of the terms of reference added considerably to the volume of evidence to be heard. In addition to the evidence taken viva voce, a vast quantity of documents were put in evidence and the reading and examination of this documentary evidence has been time consuming.

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