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Maharaj and Concerned Residents of Cunupia v. Minister of Planning and R.P.N. Enterprises Ltd.
Having received complaints from the first claimant and other residents of Cunupia, the Town and Country Planning Division investigated the establishment of a Concrete Batching Plant which stood on the premises of a company. In the name of the Minister of Planning and Sustainable Development, the Town and Country Planning Division refused to grant planning permission to the company for the operation of the plant. Upon an appeal by the Interested Party, the Minister overturned his first decision. The court was posed to decide on the circumstances in which a public authority can review its own decision, and when does the review of an earlier decision amount to illegality.
 Nonetheless, it seems that the words of Carnworth J ring true. It would, in my view, be contrary to the principles of good administration for a public authority to be continually changing its decision or changing its decision without good reason. Persons affected by the decision have a right to be able to rely on the certainty of administrative decisions and to make their private plans accordingly. Indeed the requirement of certainty in administrative decision-making is one of the principles which requires expeditious consideration of applications for judicial review. Thus in O‘Reilly v. Mackman  3 All ER 1124, Lord Diplock said at page 1131: The public interest in good administration requires that public authorities and third parties should not be kept in suspense about the legal validity of a decision the authority has reached in the purported exercise of decision-making powers for any longer period than is absolutely necessary in fairness to the person affected by the decision…‖The statement of Lord Diplock was quoted and relied upon by Lord Goff in Caswell v. Dairy Produce Quota Tribunal  2 All ER 434 at 441.
 In my view therefore, unless there was a change in circumstances as alluded to in Cardiff [Rv. Cardiff  3 PLR 55 ], it is my view that it would have been wrong for the Minister to depart from his earlier decision.
 In my view and according to the evidence there was no change in the circumstances of the site between March, 2012 when permission was refused and October, 2012, when the original decision was reviewed.
 The site certainly remained the same. The Interested Party has asserted that it was only after the grant of planning permission that the batching plant became operational. According to the evidence there were only two differences. The first was that the EMA changed its mind. The second difference was that a different panel undertook the investigation on behalf of the Minister. The first investigation was conducted by Mr. Pariag of the TCPD, while the second was conducted by the Advisory Panel, chaired by Mr. Mooleedhar.
 According to the evidence of the defendant, it is my view that both investigations followed the same paces. Both involved a site visit. The difference was that Mr. Mooleedhar sat as a virtual Court of Appeal on recommendations of Mr. Pariag.
 Accordingly, it is my view that the evidence has not demonstrated that the review was based on a change of circumstances. This is manifested from the reason provided by the Minister in his letter of the 6th December, 2012 to learned instructing attorney for the claimant. The reasons resonate rather like judgment on appeal.
 It follows therefore, that it is my view that there was no change of circumstances between the first decision and the review. It is my view that the Minister‘s reversal of his original decision was contrary to good administration and illegal, particularly in the face of an express statutory provision that his decision was final.
The Court concluded that there was no change of circumstances between the first decision and the review. It was of the view that the Minister‘s reversal of his original decision was contrary to good administration and illegal, particularly in the face of an express statutory provision that his decision was final.