Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Who bought 11 copies of 'Gazette'?

Hinds: Someone purchased papers between Sept 1-10

Who brought 11 copies of the Proclamation Order for Section 34 and the Gazette in which the proclamation was recorded?

Someone did, according to information provided by Public Utilities Minister Nizam Baksh in the Senate yesterday.

In response to a question from PNM Senator Fitzgerald Hinds, Baksh said no one bought the Gazette or Proclamation Order at the sale section of the Government printery on August 30, the date of the Proclamation.

However, someone purchased 11 copies at the Printery between September 1 and 10.

September 10 is the date on which businessmen Ishwar Galbaransingh and Steve Ferguson filed their applications to have their matters discharged under (the now repealed) Section 34 of the Administration of Justice bill.

They would have needed these documents to accompany their applications before the court.

Hinds asked on what particular day the 11 copies of the legal notice and the Gazette were purchased, Baksh said that while he knew the copies were purchased on one day, he did not have the information on which day.

He said the Government Printery sale section is the only authorised outlet for the sale of the legal notices, gazettes and other documents.

Hinds had to be cautioned repeatedly by Senate President Timothy Hamel-Smith about engaging in a debate instead of asking questions.

In response to another question from Hinds, Attorney General Anand Ramlogan said he was out of the country between July 20 and August 4, as was already stated publicly by Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar in a statement to the nation. He said he was in the jurisdiction between August 5 and September 1.

"In other words the Attorney General was present when the Cabinet note (recommending the proclamation of Section 34) was presented to the Cabinet," Hinds said.

Ramlogan said he was in the jurisdiction when the Cabinet note that dealt with the proclamation was presented and discussed, "as was disclosed publicly a long time ago".

Hinds then asked whether the Attorney General was saying that as the Government's legal advisor he too was taken in by the purported misleading of the Cabinet by a former minister (Justice minister Herbert Volney).

Ramlogan said he answered the question of whether he was in the jurisdiction. He advised Hinds to file a "fresh" question if he wanted to engage him further on this issue.

"I will be happy and enthusiastic to answer it because I have nothing to hide on that matter," Ramlogan stated.