Thursday, January 18, 2018

Fixin’ T&T: Anand unfit for office

...also calls for firing of Al-Rawi in wake of PCA leak

 THERE has been another call for Attorney General Anand Ramlogan to be immediately fired after his “latest rants and tirade about the leak of the Police Complaints Authority’s (PCA) report, which further demonstrates that he is wholly unfit to hold that office”.

The call was made yesterday by Kirk Waithe, leader of civil rights group Fixin’ T&T, saying the “ongoing transgressions” of Ramlogan were worse than that of the 13 People’s Partnership Government ministers who have been removed from office to date.

Fixin’ T&T also took issue with the handling of the report on the probe into the New Flying Squad Investigative Unit by People’s National Movement (PNM) Senator Faris Al-Rawi, calling his actions injudicious.

In a media release, the non-governmental organisation (NGO) said Al-Rawi’s misrepresentation of the key findings of the report, under the cloak of parliamentary privilege, was irresponsible and called for PNM leader Dr Keith Rowley to advise President Anthony Carmona to revoke the senator’s appointment if his acts were deliberate.

But in an immediate response via a media release, the Office of the Attorney General labelled Fixin’ T&T as a branch of the PNM that masque­rades as an NGO.

“His (Waithe’s) clever conditional call for the removal of Senator Al-Rawi is a disguise for his hollow and baseless attacks on the Government,” said the AG’s release.

Fixin’ T&T said Ramlogan referred to Section 20 (3) of the PCA Act, leading the public to believe the PCA was mandated to submit the report to the Minister of National Security, but he neglected to say the minister referred to in the act is the Minister of Legal Affairs.

In response to this, Ramlogan said: “The Attorney General notes that Fixin’ T&T did not call upon Al-Rawi to disclose his source or explain the various contradictory responses given to date. They range from finding them in his mailbox to someone dropping it off at his law office. 

“It likewise did not see it fit to call for any investigation to see who committed this offence. If Mr Waithe asserts that it is the line minister for the PCA who should be provided with a copy of the PCA’s report, please note that as acting Minister of Legal Affairs, the Attorney General is in fact the line minister for the PCA and no report was provided. 

“A discretion given to any institution of the State must, in law, be exercised rationally, and it is clear that a copy should have been submitted to the Government, given the clear implications for national security,” the AG added

Fixin’ T&T alleges Ramlogan continues to demonstrate incompetence in the office he holds and also continues to make deliberate attempts to undermine the democracy of the country by allegedly facilita­ting and bringing bad legislation to Parliament (e.g., the “Soldier Bill” and the “No Bail for Illegal Guns Bill”).

The release pointed out Ramlogan continues to tell “blatant lies” and misrepresents the public “by asserting that soldiers in Jamaica have powers of arrest and his flip-flop on the Integrity Commission’s ability to investigate ‘emailgate’”, along with a number of other issues, inclu­ding his alleged “relentless attack on the media, journalists and reporters”.

Fixin’ T&T pointed out Ramlogan also continues to openly attack and make patently false statements about an NGO critical of the Government.

In his response, the Attorney Gen­eral said Waithe had been “obsessed” with him since he (Ramlogan) asked several questions that Waithe has refused to answer.

“In the interest of transparency, these unanswered questions are: Who is financing Fixin’ T&T? Is it the PNM? Who are the executive members of Fixin’ T&T? Does it have a constitution or does it rely on the PNM’s constitution? How was Kirk Waithe elected as its leader? Who are the members? Are they all members of the PNM? What part of Balisier House does one go to get an application form to become a member of Fixin’ T&T?

 “His nonsensical accusations are likely to get worse as time goes by,” said Ramlogan.