Thursday, February 22, 2018

Somebody has something to hide

Ramesh: AG trying to obstruct Integrity Commission...

Attorney Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj has accused Attorney General Anand Ramlogan of attempting to obstruct the Integrity Commission from conducting a proper investigation into the Emailgate scandal. 

Maharaj was responding to claims by Ramlogan that the e-mails read out by Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley in Parliament in May last year were fake. 

Ramlogan produced a certified affidavit from Google Inc on Sunday which he said invalidates the entire Emailgate scandal.

Maharaj said, “The Attorney General is trying to obstruct and frustrate the Integrity Commission from conducting a full and proper enquiry into this matter. He had no right to file a private action to run competition with the Integrity Commission and he has a duty to withdraw his actions and allow the Integrity Commission to conduct its action against Google.” 

Maharaj, in an interview yesterday said it was already known that the e-mail addresses on the documents were incorrect. 

He said the Emailgate issue was not whether the addresses were correct but whether the content of the e-mails came from the authentic e-mail addresses of the Prime Minister, Attorney General and other Government ministers.

Maharaj accused the Government of resisting an independent and impartial enquiry. 

“The Integrity Commission decided to conduct an enquiry and as part of that enquiry decided to take action against Google to get the full information in the matter as part of its full investigation. 

“The Attorney General without disclosing anything to the public launched a private action to compete with the Integrity Commission and in order to prevent and frustrate a full enquiry into the matter. 

“The purpose of that action is to be able to prevent the Integrity Commission from conducting an enquiry as far as it decides to do without hindrance and objection and frustration from the Attorney General. 

“So the Google decision that the address was an inaccurate address and nothing was sent from that address, does not assist the public interest and is no victory to the Attorney General.”

Maharaj said by filing private action, the Attorney General had prevented the central authority in the Ministry of the Attorney General from conducting an investigation into the matter.

“So it seems to me that what is happening is that somebody has something to hide and the Attorney General should really withdraw his action against Google and allow the Integrity Commission to conduct its independent and impartial investigation,” he said.

Maharaj said Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar should remove the Attorney General from office until the matter is resolved.

Responding to Ramlogan’s decision to sue Rowley for his role in the fiasco, Maharaj said, was misconceived, frivolous and an abuse of process.

“Mr Ramlogan knows that he cannot get off the ground with any legal action. Mr Rowley made statements in this matter in which it was alleged that he may have been involved. But what Mr Rowley was asking for was an independent enquiry into this matter. 

“I read Mr Rowley’s speech and it never said that Mr Ramlogan was involved. What he said is that the country would like to know whether it is true whether these ministers and the Prime Minister were persons who sent or received these e-mails,” he said.