IC Deputy Chairman Ventour Disagrees, Resigns

Ventour disagrees with Emailgate statement…
‘Time to stand up’

By Renuka Singh
May 21, 2015 – guardian.co.tt

Justice Sebastian VentourDeputy chairman of the Integrity Commission, retired Justice Sebastian Ventour, yesterday resigned, throwing the body into disarray yet again.

In a telephone interview yesterday, Ventour, whose departure came a day after member Dr Shelly Anne Lalchan also quit, said he took the decision because he disagreed with the media release from the commission which had stated that the prolonged Emailgate investigation had been “terminated.”

“It has everything to do with the statement that the investigations into the Emailgate matter has been terminated. I sent in my resignation today (yesterday). I am out,” Ventour said.

On Tuesday, the Integrity Commission wrote to Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar’s lawyer, Israel Khan, SC, informing him there was “no or insufficient grounds” to continue the probe.

The commission’s investigation was launched in 2013 after Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley read out a thread of email correspondence purported to be from key Government ministers, including Persad-Bissessar, former attorney general Anand Ramlogan, Minister of Works and Infrastructure Dr Suruj Rambachan, Housing Minister Dr Roodal Moonilal and then national security adviser Gary Griffith.

Former commission chairman Ken Gordon had recused himself from the investigation and Ventour took charge. Ventour directed the commission US lawyers in their protracted battle with search engine Google Inc in a California court to obtain the relevant information on the email correspondence.

Yesterday, he said he was taking a principled stand on the matter, hence his decision to resign.

“You have to take a stand on principle, I have, or at least I hope I have, a penchant for doing what is right and what the Integrity Commission did was incorrect. What it said in the published statement was incorrect,” Ventour said.

He said the Emailgate investigation and the information the commission received involved just Persad-Bissessar and Ramlogan but said nothing about the other individuals also under investigation. As the matter was being investigated as a whole, there were still two outstanding investigations into other email addresses, he said.

“They are with Hotmail. The matter, therefore, cannot be complete. We are saying that the matter is finished but with that information still outstanding it cannot be finished,” Ventour added.

Ventour said he had “taken an oath” to do his duty and believed he owed it to the public to be honest.

“When I am asked if that decision was made against what I stand for, I can stand behind my words and I can stand behind the truth,” he said.

Ventour did not want to comment on whether he believed his resignation on a principled stand implied that the commission had been compromised and said he could not comment on a meeting he had with chairman Zainool Hosein.

“But yes we did have a meeting about this issue,” he said.

Ventour said he hoped his resignation opened the eyes of people in T&T.

“I am hoping that people see it is time to stand up for what is just and what is right and fair. We must learn too that what is right is right,” he said.

Ventour also refused to comment on whether his resignation implied that the rest of the commission was complicit with the details in its statement.

“Perhaps they have a different view than I do but I would not comment on that. I would say that it is incorrect to say that it could finalise the Emailgate investigation when that is not true,” he said.

Asked whether he believed the Integrity Commission had become politicised by its letter closing the matter, Ventour said: “I would not say that it is politicised but how on earth can you say that you are finished with the investigation when in fact that is not so?”

He accepted that he may now face criticism by Government supporters for resigning after Persad-Bissessar claimed the commission’s letter had vindicated her.

“I know that will happen and I am prepared to deal with it. When you stand on truth there is nothing to fear,” Ventour said.

The T&T Guardian understands that the resignation letter, once submitted to the chairman, will be forwarded to President Anthony Carmon, who is expected to make a statement on the issue today.

Gordon: Consensus needed

Former Integrity Commission chairman Ken Gordon did not sound surprised when informed of Ventour’s resignation yesterday.

In a telephone interview, Gordon said he did have an idea that Ventour would have resigned and he gave some insight into how the commission operated in such matters.

“Documents are normally prepared by the registrar but obviously the chair would have sight of the documents before it is sent out. He has to see the final package.

“Normally, the way it works is that the matter then comes before the commissioners for a discussion,” he added

Gordon said it was customary for all the sitting commissioners to discuss the matter and make their opinions known. He said there would always be times of disagreements and at those times the chair would go along with the prevailing view.

“The chair could have a position that the others don’t agree with, but a responsible chair would go with a general consensus. Some members may feel strongly enough about the matter that they take a principled stand and walk away with the rationale that they would rather leave than have their name associated with something,” he added.

Also contacted yesterday, Persad-Bissessar’s lawyer, Israel Khan, SC, said he was in court all day and was not aware Ventour had resigned.

“I don’t know anything so how could I say something?” he said.

When asked if he was concerned that Ventour’s resignation overshadowed any claim to victory made by his client, Khan said nothing worried him.

“This is Trinidad, I am not too concerned,” he said.

Khan said he did not know how the Integrity Commission operated and was not privy to its internal operations.

When asked if Hosein ever worked in his chambers, Khan said: “I just don’t know anything about that.”

Gordon: Consensus needed

Former Integrity Commission chairman Ken Gordon did not sound surprised when informed of Ventour’s resignation yesterday.

In a telephone interview, Gordon said he did have an idea that Ventour would have resigned and he gave some insight into how the commission operated in such matters.

“Documents are normally prepared by the registrar but obviously the chair would have sight of the documents before it is sent out. He has to see the final package.

“Normally, the way it works is that the matter then comes before the commissioners for a discussion,” he added

Gordon said it was customary for all the sitting commissioners to discuss the matter and make their opinions known. He said there would always be times of disagreements and at those times the chair would go along with the prevailing view.

“The chair could have a position that the others don’t agree with, but a responsible chair would go with a general consensus. Some members may feel strongly enough about the matter that they take a principled stand and walk away with the rationale that they would rather leave than have their name associated with something,” he added.

Also contacted yesterday, Persad-Bissessar’s lawyer, Israel Khan, SC, said he was in court all day and was not aware Ventour had resigned.

“I don’t know anything so how could I say something?” he said.

When asked if he was concerned that Ventour’s resignation overshadowed any claim to victory made by his client, Khan said nothing worried him.

“This is Trinidad, I am not too concerned,” he said.

Khan said he did not know how the Integrity Commission operated and was not privy to its internal operations.

When asked if Hosein ever worked in his chambers, Khan said: “I just don’t know anything about that.”

Source: www.guardian.co.tt/news/2015-05-21/%E2%80%98time-stand-up%E2%80%99

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Integrity Commission ends emailgate probe Deputy chairman flabbergasted

By Anna Ramdass
May 21, 2015 – trinidadexpress.com

Integrity Commission deputy chairman Justice Sebastian Ventour yesterday tendered his resignation saying he was “flabbergasted” with the Commission’s decision to terminate its investigation into Emailgate.

Ventour invited the media to his St Joseph home yesterday after numerous requests for an interview. In the 19-minute interview he made it clear he was a man who stood on principle and could not stay with a Commission that misled the country.

The Integrity Commission, which has a history of being plagued with controversies, now faces potential collapse as prior to Ventour’s resignation, another member, Dr Shelly-Anne Lalchan, tendered her resignation on Wednesday.

However, when the Express visited Lalchan’s medical office at Endeavour Road, Chaguanas, yesterday, her relative said she was not prepared to speak at this time. He insisted that Lalchan’s resignation had nothing to do with Emailgate and it was a personal family issue that led to her decision.

Ventour on the other hand had no qualms in speaking his mind and dared anyone to challenge his position.

The retired High Court judge said the Commission did not sufficiently investigate Emailgate, adding that the content of the e-mails must also be looked into.

He repeated that the letter sent to Israel Khan SC on May 19 was “incorrect” and he himself was surprised to learn about it as he saw it on television.

Full Article : trinidadexpress.com

28 Responses to “IC Deputy Chairman Ventour Disagrees, Resigns”


  • “The retired High Court judge said the Commission did not sufficiently investigate Emailgate, adding that the content of the e-mails must also be looked into.”—Ventor

    As a distinguish judge if a man brought information that was wrong verified by Google Inc. as being wrong then what else is there to investigate?
    You would know Sir that you need solid material evidence to pronounce, in this case was there a dead reporter, the answer is NO. Was the DPP offered a judge position, the answer is NO. Was the spy equipment found? According to the CoP, the answer is NO.
    So where are you going to find this assumption of guilt. According to Western Law a man is innocent until PROVEN guilty. According to PNM law a man who is not PNM is guilty until proven innocent. This guilty until proven innocent mindset is dangerous for the nation. Thank you for resigning, you did the honorable thing. I now pronounce in my court, you are guilty of breaking the law you swore to uphold by discussing this particular case.

  • EMAILGATE NOT CLOSED
    INTEGRITY Commission Deputy Chairman, retired Justice Sebastian Ventour, yesterday accused the body which he sat on until yesterday of misleading the public on the emailgate affair.

    Police still waiting for Emailgate info
    The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) is continuing its emailgate investigation, stressing yesterday that its investigation and that of the Integrity Commission were “separate and distinct”.

    Rowley: Commission collapsing
    President Anthony Carmona must “act with dispatch” on the “calamity” of the Integrity Commission, Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley declared last night, following the resignation of its deputy chairman retired Justice Sebastian Ventour who yesterday distanced himself from the Commission’s announcement that its emailgate probe was over.

    Police: We not in politics
    The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service described itself yesterday as “apolitical” as it provided an update on its emailgate investigation which it says is not complete.

    Sharma quits PNM post over Emailgate affair
    People’s National Movement (PNM) disciplinary committee member Dr Subash Sharma, who resigned from the party yesterday, had initiated legal action earlier this year against outgoing Integrity Commission member Dr Shelly Anne Lalchan. Sharma confirmed both developments yesterday. On his resignation, he said PNM leader Keith Rowley’s situation in the Emailgate issue was the last straw for him.

    • The PM who has done more for the citizenry and is not taking a nose dive for anything. The only one taking this nosedive is your buddy Dr. Rowley. He can go and bring out some more fake emails, emails that don’t exist. In time his own pernicious ways with take him down. Yes the PM have enemies in high places but who does not have enemies. Even God have the devil to contend with…

      • Jerry C. Hussain

        ANOTHER HAS JUMPED UP ONTO THE BANDWAGON BUT THE TRUTH IS GOING TO COME OUT. DISAPPOINTMENT IS IN THE AIR.

    • MEDIA RELEASE – Did former Deputy Chairman of the Integrity Commission Justice Sebastian Ventour break the law?

      Section 35. (1) of the Integrity in Public Life Act (the Act which governs the operations of the Integrity Commission) clearly states – “The records of the Commission and any information revealed by a witness or by the production of documents, shall not be disclosed other than to such extent as may be necessary for the purpose of proceedings in any Court relating to a charge under this Act, the Prevention of Corruption Act or any other written law.”

      There are no court proceedings and no charges brought against any person in this matter or under the IPLA, the Prevention of Corruption Act or any other written law so the question needs to be asked, did former deputy chairman of the Integrity Commission Justice Sebastian Ventour run afoul of this in his interview with the media broadcast this evening? Further, did the media, by broadcasting his words, aid and abet any such offense?

      Section 35. (2) of the same Integrity in Public Life Act further states – “Any member of the Commission and any person in the service of the Commission who discloses or attempts to disclose to any person other than a person to whom he is authorized under the Act, any information or evidence received by the Commission under this Part, shall be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine of two hundred and fifty thousand dollars and to imprisonment for five years.”

      In the above-mentioned media interview the former Commissioner appears to have delved into matters about what might and might not have been discussed and other matters that seemed to contravene Section 35 (1) and (2), and the media, by the broadcast of that interview, may have aided and abetted the commission of the offense under (2).

      All of that said, at this point perhaps it is best that the Director of Public Prosecutions takes a look at what was said and done to determine if any offense has been committed under the above-mentioned Act, and if yes, to begin action against those who may be guilty under Section 35 (1) and (2), and I respectfully call on the Director of Public Prosecutions to so do.

      Philip Edward Alexander
      Social & Political Activist
      Independent Candidate
      Diego Martin West
      682 2110

      • Yoruba Israelite

        Is this a joke?

        Section 35 does not bar a Commissioner from speaking to the press and public.

        The bar is against revealing “records of the Commission”, “information revealed by a witness”, or information revealed by the “production of documents”, i.e. the sort of information that may constitute evidence in a court proceeding against an accused.

        It seems to me that Justice Ventour revealed meta-information, that is, information about information, i.e. information about process, e.g. making distinction between form and substance, whether the finding contained in the IC letter was factually correct, etc.

        Such meta-information about an important public institution is of public interest, and clearly is not what is targeted under Section 35.

        May the most high God, Yahweh, protect the innocent and expose the wicked in this matter.

        Shalom.

        Shalom.

  • @Babaloo

    I get your point but I would like us to look at this situation another way.

    If someone sent you an email alleging that John rapes babies in his house and you believe the email may be true, what should you do? What if you were aware of John’s pedophilic tendencies and tried to investigate the email but you did not have the means to verify it, should you take the email to the police? Should the police only investigate if the email account existed?

    Supposing they found out the email address was fake and stopped the investigation then later found out that the rapes did occur or the child was killed by John, they would be held responsible for not also checking to see if the allegation was true.

    In this era of whistleblowing, employees who are privy to wrongdoing expose information in strange ways while trying to conceal their identity for fear of victimization.

    The information in those emails is too serious to be ignored. The police also have to investigate who sent the emails, if Rowley made them up himself, if he conspired with others to spread lies, or if some disgruntled member of the UNC or ILP party sent them to Rowley.

    • Freedom of thought and movement is guaranteed in the Constitution. You cannot convict a person based on a set of emails. You have to have solid evidence that would stand up in a court of law.

  • Nosedive wipe-out

    By Sheila Rampersad
    May 21, 2015 – trinidadexpress.com

    If Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar were a surfer, she would be an exasperated one.

    Day after day, week after week, she sits on the shore watching the water for that tell-tale rise.

    Sometimes, impatiently, she paddles far from shore to coast on her board hoping for that one big one that would invite her to deftly lift herself up, stand with feet apart, knees only slightly bent and ride freely, a flip here and a turn there, until, sated, she guides herself ashore, happy and ready for the next five.

    Alas! Each wave is the wrong one.

    Some days the seas are eerily calm as if in the eye of a storm. Other days the tides are low, exposing rocks beneath. During high tide, the waves deceive-they appear attractively full and high but they curve straight past the queen to break on shore. Some waves fizzle before the star surfer even mounts her board. Mostly the waves are big but stars and moon align in such a way and so frequently that the surfer finds herself pearling: the front of her board dips into the water, the back launches up, the rider is unceremoniously thrown off, smacks into the ocean and the wave crashes right on top of her. Thus catspraddled, she gasps for breath and tries again and again.

    So it is with Kamla Persad-Bissessar. On the lookout for a wave on which to ride into the general election, she, not unlike other prime ministers, is finding that incumbency is an unshakeable burden rather than a VIP ticket into those places where the air is rare. Each time she thinks she has just the one, she swallows salt water.

    The primary strategy, undisguised, is to pelt a surfeit of adjectives at the character of the main contender, Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley. Pelt until he is flattened, trounced upon, government boot resting on his neck and immediately seize upon the first wave that happens by and ride over political opposition back into the safety of prime ministerial office.

    If that doesn’t sound familiar, it should. Guyana’s People’s Progressive Party/Civic recently used the very same approach in the election that it lost. Insinuating that now-elected President David Granger was involved in Walter Rodney’s assassination, the PPP-C tried to drill fear into the Guyanese electorate; Granger, if elected, would send soldiers to kick in the doors of Indian families. Kaieteur News-which along with Stabroek News was accused by former president Bharrat Jagdeo of political bias favouring the APNU/AFC coalition-described the recent campaign as featuring “vicious vituperation and personal attacks” demonstrating “abnormal vulgarity and absurdity.”
    Full Article : trinidadexpress.com

  • Morally and legally wrong, says Khan

    By Rickie Ramdass
    May 21, 2015 – trinidadexpress.com

    IT was just under three weeks after Senior Counsel Israel Khan wrote a letter to the Integrity Commission, calling for the swift completion of the investigation into the Emailgate scandal, the commission announced the investigation was terminated because of “no or insufficient grounds.”

    Khan, who is seeking the inte­rest of Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar in the investigation, sent the letter to the commission on April 29, saying justice and fairness demand the investigation be completed “and the public be informed of the commission’s findings as soon as possible”.

    “I am of the view that it is mo­rally and legally wrong to have this matter hanging over the head of my client, especially in the atmosphere of a pending general election, and I respectfully call upon the Integrity Commission to expedite this investigation if it is not yet completed,” the letter stated.
    Full Article : trinidadexpress.com

  • JustRight, I have to commend you on your intelligence. You actually did get a point in Babaloo statements.

    However, what I am hearing is that only one person could be and should be guilty here, and that is Dr. Rowley. Everyone else involved is saintly. So far, no lawyer, attorney, Internet provider or Commission has answered the question and confirmed with evidence. Were the e-mail addresses (note addresses) involved existent at the time? If the answer is/was in the negative, then there was no need to go to Google and wait two years. Case closed – fake e-mails.

    Just yesterday, I heard a Braveboy host on a radio programme, implying that e-mails cannot be produced in hard copies, because Windows and Microsoft Word applications are not related to e-mails. What junk.

    As far as some people are concerned, there must only be one outcome. Anything else is corruption, propaganda and any other word you can think of, except Justice.

  • It is in the best interest of the PNM and their supporters in high places to keep this emailgate investigation open until the election is completed, and that is exactly what we are witnessing…the Leader of the Opposition, the Police, the Deputy DPP, a high court judge, all demanding that the “contents” of the emails should be investigated.Now the Police announces that they are simply awaiting the emails of Griffith and Rambachan to complete the case.Does this mean that the contents so far have been deemed untrue.
    One has to wonder how investigators proceed to examine fictitious contents, after admitting that the emails were fake, a fact that NO ONE has denied after the Google information.
    First, they demanded that all emails be investigated, real and imaginary…done. Now they are screaming for the examination of contents.
    Like the ten year old case of the PNM agents inserting cocaine in Sadiq’s water tank, this email fiasco will die and remain unsolved if the PNM is victorious .Political contamination on both sides has infiltrated our institutions and the stench is poisoning the nation, and embedded in this rot is the ugly issue of the Port of Spain Afro elite returning to power and as they put it, “taking back their country”.

    • http://m.guardian.co.tt/news/2015-05-21/pm-ordered-rest-after-diabetes-scare

      Ok Kamla,enough with the foreign tours,as you’ve already visited some 188,of the total 194 states,across the globe. Travel can be quite stressful-especially when you are trying to hide,the wink /wink ,not too secret activities,you as ‘de Indo elite high chieftain,have been indulging in.
      Another thing Auntie K.Try and cut back on those high calorie ,alcoholic beverages,much favored by members of the tribe.
      Yeah we know,you are in a celebratory mode,now dat the co-opted/ PP manipulated IC,has prematurely ruled in ‘you alze’ favor-even if half de population ,ain’t have a clue ,as to what this integrity commission is,and de other half,ain’t give a rat’s behind,as to why it’s even in existence,or worst yet,why all it’s members,are suddenly resigning,and or ,wishing to distance themselves ,from the recent inexplicable ruling.
      Here is a useful,stress releasing suggestion Auntie K,and it’s free.
      Call de darn elections,and let the voters get a chance to help ‘relieve you of your misery’-as we like to say on the streets.
      When you again,become an insignificant, Parliamentary back bench MP,you will then have all the time in de world to take care of the miserable grand kids,get your long overdue back rubs,among other ignored things.
      We de cyber progressives,wish you well-but just not politically.
      Otra vez-Enough already!

  • Ramesh: The Integrity Commission has lost the public’s confidence

    FORMER Attorney General Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj on Friday said that the Integrity Commission could no longer expect to have the confidence of the public as a result of its actions regarding the emailgate issue. The follow is his statement –

    Yesterday, I drew the attention of the national community to two matters. I pointed out that the probe by the Integrity Commission into the email gate matter was not a vindication of the Prime Minister because the Police Service and the D.P.P. were conducting an active criminal investigation.

    I also pointed out that the Prime minister was interfering in a criminal investigation which was being conducted by the Police Service and which was assisted by the USA Justice Department pursuant to the terms of the Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Treaty with the USA and the Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Act.

    Last night the nation discovered after the resignation of the Deputy Chairman of the Integrity Commission that even the Integrity Commission had not completed its work with respect to this matter. The rush to produce a letter to the Prime Minister by the Integrity Commission is not only worrisome but it is frightening and it brings the Integrity Commission into disrepute. The effect of that is that the public can no longer have confidence in the Integrity Commission.

    Today, I am left with no choice, but to call on the Police Service to immediately launch a probe in the national interest into whether the Prime Minister (acting in concert with others) has interfered in an ongoing investigation by the Integrity Commission. Further, I am calling on the police to launch an investigation into whether the Prime Minister has interfered and/or attempted to interfere in an ongoing police investigation.

    These matters amount if proven to the criminal offences of conspiring to pervert the course of public justice and/or attempting to pervert the course of public justice.

    I also call on His Excellency the President of our nation to dismiss the present Integrity Commission which has quite obviously at a minimum been placed under a dark cloud of suspicion

    I also call on the Prime Minister to tender her resignation as Prime Minister of this country and to take immediate steps for the Parliament to be dissolved and for the General Elections to be held. These events have shown that public office was misused and abused and that the Parliament and public office were used to promote the governing party’s political interests and not the public interests of Trinidad and Tobago.

    I am heartened and I am sure Trinidad and Tobago is also heartened by the unbiased and methodical approach taken by the public servants in the Police Service and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions in this matter. I urge these officers to continue their investigations in as thorough a fashion as is now possible in order to continue to protect and vindicate the Constitution of our country, and its laws and the public interest.

    http://www.trinidadexpress.com/20150522/news/ramesh-the-integrity-commission-has-lost-the-publics-confidence

  • Yoruba Israelite

    Re: Renuka Singh article, Trinidad Guardian. Time to stand up (http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2015-05-21/%E2%80%98time-stand-up%E2%80%99)

    When asked if he was concerned that Ventour’s resignation overshadowed any claim to victory made by his client, Khan said nothing worried him.

    “This is Trinidad, I am not too concerned,” he said.

    What does Israel Khan mean by that, I wonder?

    It is a statement that troubles me, because it suggests a world-weary cynicism.

    It certainly does not invite us to consider that in Trinidad we need not be concerned, because we can always count on high office-holders to do what’s right, without “fear or favour, malice or ill will”.

    Therefore I am inclined to believe that he is suggesting a world-weary cynicism.

    If so, then I am pleased that there have been at least two public servants these last few days — Mrs. Honore-Paul and Justice Sebastien Ventour — who, like Daniel, would brave the lion’s den rather than fail in the performance of their sworn duty.

    I for one am heartened by that, and that it might give pause to those of cynical mind that assume that just because they are in thrall to Mammon, that everyone else is.

    When asked if Hosein ever worked in his chambers, Khan said: “I just don’t know anything about that.”

    How different this answer is from those given by Justice Ventour. It is a blatant lie, clearly. Because he has to know. The answer must either be yes or no. Or if he wishes not to answer, he may say so, and escape the pointed implication of the reporter’s question. But he ought not to lie.

    From this, we may gauge the moral mettle of this lawyer to the PM, and by implication the moral mettle of the PM.

    I do not like what I see there.

    But at least I can be heartened by what is on display by the likes of Justice Ventour, Mrs. Honore-Paul, and indeed her boss the DPP for having quite properly recused himself from the emailgate matter. These three represent the Trinidad I’m proud of, and give the lie to the cynical tenor of Mr. Khan’s comment.

    May God protect the innocent in this matter, and expose the wicked.

    Shalom.

  • Law Association to Zainool, Carmona say something now
    THE Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago (LATT) is calling on the Chairman of Integrity Commission to address allegations made by the Commission’s former deputy chairman Justice Sebastian Ventour which prompted his resignation on Thursday. LATT is also asking for the intervention of President Anthony Carmona in the matter.

  • It is somewhat comforting to see that in spite of the heavy handedness and overreach of this PP government, there are some public servants like Ms Honore-Paul and retired Justice Ventour
    remain true to their oath of office to uphold the principles of the offices they swore to be in compliance with. This PP government like the one that just got thrown out by the people of Guyana, tried every conceivable means to remain in office, even it it means telling lies, misrepresenting the truth, forging wrong figures, appointing unqualified people for the offices held, wastage (of money and resources), and a host of ungodly acts that one would only expect from criminals. As a signatory to Multi-national Alliances and Legal fraternities, it is shameful to see a Prime Minister who thinks nothing of releasing confidential information supplied by a member state to gain advantage in a so called ‘private’ matter. If the word HONEST were to meet Kamla face to face, I don’t think that she would be able to recognize it, especially if it was spelt with the same letters H-O-N-E-S-T. Her penchant for telling is disgraceful for one holding such high profile title as Prime Minister. In normal circumstances, one would think that the Prime Minister would be heartened by the behavior of Ms. Honore-Paul and retired Justice Vantour. But instead she chose to chastise them for their honesty and forthrightness. It is uncommon for her to meet and feel comfortable with such integrity displayed by these two public servants. Instead she was heartened by Justice Zainool Hosein, who without the consent of ALL fellow commissioners chose to tell the country that the Integrity Commission, not IC minus Lalchan and Ventour, but the whole Integrity Commission concluded that they MUST stop the investigation. Total dishonesty for officials operating on behalf of the people of Trinidad and Tobago, to come forward and deceive us all. This is what we have grown accustomed to under the leadership of Kamla Persad-Bissessar. She has given us a chief whip (or something of that nature) call Moonilal, who might be better suited in a circus than operate as a member of parliament. She has given us Devant Maharaj who might be better suited as a member of the KKK than as a member of parliament. She has given us Anand Ramlogan, who has never gone to a jury of his peers, without conniving on how to lie to them and maneuver on how to get around them, to present his cases. He too lies through his teeth and maybe in his dreams. The man does not know what honesty is. She pays those propagandists to spill her lies and dishonesty all over the media without any shame at all. Case in point, Mamoo, he repeats on a constant basis, ‘achievements’ that any minister of government would be hard-pressed to repeat without reading from a prepared script.
    It is one thing to tell lies, but it is worse when it comes from official sources. How can Zainool Hosein explain the truth in his letter to another clown Israel Khan, without being dishonest?
    The people of Trinidad and Tobago do not deserve this kind of behavior from our elected leaders. WE DEFINITELY DESERVE BETTER!

  • There are divided views on the matter, as there are calls for the commission to be disbanded given Ventour’s statements and others who feel that process was followed as the letter was issued after approval of a quorum of three and Ventour may be in breach of the Integrity in Public Life Act for his public ­disclosure.

    • What is very troubling is Justice Ventour’s accusation that Justice Gosine presented “incorrect” to Mr. Israel Khan and the Trinidad and Tobago media.

      What is even more startling is his comment in the Express report dated Friday 22 May, 2015 that he only learned about the letter through the media! If true, this is absolutely shocking. How can he sit on the Commission and not be privy to the final decision of the Integrity Commission.

      Whether or not Dr. Moonilal asserts that the Commission’s decision was final and may very well be, it certainly seems to be under a heavy cloud of suspicion.

      If Justice Ventour only learned about the letter to Prime Minister Persad-Bissessar’s through the media, who else on the commission knew or did not know about the letter to Mr. Khan prior to its release?

      Regardless of one’s political leaning, Justice Ventour’s admissions are deeply distressing if true.

  • It is in the best interest of the PNM and their supporters in high places to keep this emailgate investigation open until the election is completed, and that is exactly what we are witnessing…the Leader of the Opposition, the Police, the Deputy DPP, a high court judge, all demanding that the “contents” of the emails should be investigated.Now the Police announces that they are simply awaiting the emails of Griffith and Rambachan to complete the case.Does this mean that the contents so far have been deemed untrue.
    One has to wonder how investigators proceed to examine fictitious contents, after admitting that the emails were fake, a fact that NO ONE has denied after the Google information.
    First, they demanded that all emails be investigated, real and imaginary…done. Now they are screaming for the examination of contents.
    Like the ten year old case of the PNM agents inserting cocaine in Sadiq’s water tank, this email fiasco will die and remain unsolved if the PNM is victorious .Political contamination on both sides has infiltrated our institutions and the stench is poisoning the nation, and embedded in this rot is the ugly issue of the Port of Spain Afro elite returning to power and as they put it, “taking back their country”.

  • @TMan

    “First, they demanded that all emails be investigated, real and imaginary…done. Now they are screaming for the examination of contents.”

    Rowley did call for all the emails to be investigated… you are right about that part. However, emails are not only email addresses…. The content is part of the emails.

  • Yoruba Israelite

    Before this is all over, the wicked will be exposed. That is a scriptural guarantee:

    “Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked” (Psalm 91:8).

    In this regard, I note that Israel Khan for one has been exposed, convicted at his own mouth.

    When asked if Hosein ever worked in his chambers, Khan said: “I just don’t know anything about that.”

    That was what was reported in yesterday’s papers (Renuka Singh, Guardian, May 22; as already discussed by me in an earlier blog).

    Today, we have him quoted as follows:

    “This is a small country and everyone knows each other or someone that knows someone. The man worked in this chamber but he is a man of impeccable integrity and character,” Khan said.

    (Renuka Singh, Guardian, May 23: http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2015-05-22/hosein-upset-over-media-hounding)

    That is what he should have said yesterday. But it has to be because of consciousness of guilt that yesterday he first sought to deny the closeness of his relationship with Judge Hosein.

    He is right that this is a small country, and the legal fraternity even smaller. That is why I could feel secure in a sure inference in my earlier blog that his statement yesterday was a lie.

    Why did he lie then became the question.

    Consciousness of guilt is the only possible answer. Because the point of the reporter’s question was clear, namely was there collusion between Khan and Hosein to get exoneration from the IC for his client the Prime Minister. Such a relationship is in itself unexceptionable in a small country such as this. That he sought to deny it or keep it hidden is what is revealing. Why? The only reason that is not derisible is consciousness of guilt.

    Therefore we may make another sure inference: There was collusion between him and Justice Hosein. This amounts to misconduct.

    Had he had no such consciousness, he would have had no reason to deny the relationship. It is only upon reflection that he realizes what he ought to have said, and we see that now reported today.

    Too late.

    He is exposed as one of the wicked. By implication, so too is Judge Hosein.

    May God protect the innocent and expose the wicked in this matter. Let the whole Truth come out, and may the chips fall where they may.

    Shalom.

  • Questioned about the strong and uncharacteristic statements made by former deputy chairman Sebastian Ventour, a former High Court judge, after his sudden resignation on Thursday, Hosein, a retired Appeal Court judge and former president of the Retired Judges Association, said, “I cannot speak on the issue of the (former) deputy chairman, I am unable to answer any questions because the Integrity Commission is not constituted.”

    (Renuka Singh, Guardian, May 23: http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2015-05-22/hosein-upset-over-media-hounding)

    Another wicked one caught in a lie. A small one, but a lie all the same, moreover unnecessary. Small though it is, it speaks volumes.

    It is the unnecessary lie that bespeaks the state of the conscience.

    Of course he is well within his rights to refuse to answer the question that was posed. And any fair-minded observer would see the wisdom for him in so doing.

    But then he goes on to give a reason: “because the Integrity Commission is not constituted”. One does not have to be a constitutional scholar, or a lawyer, to know that that makes no sense. There can be no oath of office — any office — that binds one to silence unless the body in question, of which the office is a part, is properly constituted. Either one is so bound, or one is not, and the temporal question whether the body in question is for the moment properly constituted or not, cannot provide either bar or license. That would be an absurdity obvious even to one unlearned in the niceties of law and the constitution.

    So what is going on here? Why an unnecessary lie?

    It is what is provoked by a troubled conscience. With a clear conscience, one simply plainly says, “no, I won’t answer that”, or “no comment”, and other such formulations that Justice Ventour provided good examples of in his recent appearance before press and public. Simple, direct, and forthright.

    But with a guilty conscience, one does not want to say, “I won’t answer”, because it might look as if one is hiding something. Instead, the guilty one looks to find safety from the inevitable follow-up question with, “I can’t answer”. But that too invites the follow-up question, “why not?”. This he tries to pre-empt with legal mumbo-jumbo he calculates will silence the pesky reporters.

    What is the saying? If you cannot dazzle with brilliance, baffle with bullsh*t.

    It silenced the reporters. But now it is in print for readers such as I to pore over and reflect upon… the better to connect dots…

    Israel Khan has already convicted himself with one lie (see elsewhere on this blog) calculated to hide collusion with Judge Hosein. Now Judge Hosein, instead of calmly and rationally defending the finding of the IC which he heads, retreats into a clear lie.

    The lie is wholly unnecessary, certainly if he is innocent, and even if he is guilty, of the suspected collusion. But conscience is a terrible thing, that defeats even legal eagles. The lie will often “jump out”, when one has something to hide.

    So another one of the wicked ones now lies (no pun intended) exposed.

    May God protect the innocent, and expose the wicked in this matter.

    Shalom.

    “Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked” (Psalm 91:8).

  • Recent events indicate that constitutional changes are required in two major areas in the governing of T&T : the office of the DPP and the Integrity Commission….. scrap both institutions.

  • What we are seeing and witnessing in this so called Emailgate affair are two things:

    1. Dr. Rowley brought the emails to Parliament to be investigated
    2. The government, hesitant to conform, accused him of being a liar and fabricating the emails.

    It is these these two facts that have employed the use of Google, U.S. Department of Justice, the Parliament of Trinidad and Tobago, The Trinidad and Tobago Police Sevice, the Integrity Commission, the DPP Office and several other related agencies of government and other states. And yet? The truth, is we are no closer to it than we were two years ago. The government hinges it’s premise that since one of the emails’ url cannot be found at Google, Dr. Rowley has fabricated it.

    For two years straight that has been the counter charge and
    prevailing attitude of the government. To add validity to its’ claims, the government has spend endless hours of parliamentary time accusing Dr Rowley of this act. They have spent endless amount of money and time tracing Dr. Rowley’s birth, upbringing and love life trying to show that Dr. Rowley’s birth is the result of rape and that Dr. Rowley himself has raped the woman, with whom his first child was born. ALL OF THESE ALLEGATIONS HAVE TURNED OUT TO BE NOT TRUE AND INTENTIONALLY FALSE.

    “People lie so that others will form beliefs that are not true. The more consequential the beliefs—that is, the more a person’s well-being demands a correct understanding of the world or of other people’s opinions—the more consequential the lie.”………. author unknown

    DR. Rowley has been the target of the UNCs rape attack with all kinds of billboards. Such billboards were prominently displayed at their (UNC) strongholds in Penal, Debe, Oropouche and other places with the sign “You Cant Trust Rowley with Your Children” or words to that effect. The meaning to those words were obviously to connect and associate Dr. Rowley as a RAPIST. Wade Mark, the colorful and less than distinguished Speaker of the House, made available every contributor in the parliament who wanted to speak ill of Dr. Rowley, to so do. Majority Leader Moonilal, used every opportunity to import adjectives of the worst form to describe Dr. Rowley as a fabricator and rapist.
    The Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar and her erstwhile Attorney General Anand Ramlogan, used every available bit of information they can gather to try to paint Dr. Rowley as the author and fabricator of the emails. All of this to no avail.
    After spending millions of doors on this quest to paint Dr. Rowley a RAPIST and a FABRICATOR, there were is still not any such information to confirm these allegations.
    With all of these allegations failing to stick on Dr. Rowley, the UNC continue its denunciation of him in any and every form available to them. Suspending him from Parliament was their latest and most damaging punishment that they unleashed on him.
    Through it all, Dr. Rowley stood firm, collected, dignified and committed to his cause as Opposition Leader. He has displayed integrity inspire of the insults and continued degradation the UNC has thrown towards him and his family. He has shown qualities that people like Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther king have endured during their times of castigation and accusations of misconduct and illegal activities. Those are the true commitments of a leader. A leader must be able to withstand persecutions and stand tall after all is done and he is testimony to that. He continues to maintain that all he needs to see is that the emails being thoroughly investigated by true independent agencies with no interests in the result of guilt or innocence, but his detractors will never stop taunting him and casting doubt about his honesty. He is the true mark of distinguished leadership and when all of this is done with, there is no doubt that he will emerge bruised and battered but courageous and dignified in his approach to the coming elections.

    Sam Adams of Forbes magazine writes …..” Liars often respond to questions with truthful statements that cast them in a favorable light.”

    Dr. Rowley continues to believe in truth and that the truth will eventually come out. The latest in the fabrication of truth was the Integrity Commission’s decisions to stop the investigation and tell the public that there is no truth in the emails. We subsequently learned that this new ‘truth’ was fabricated by the Commission’s Chairman, Zainool Hosein, who is now using technicality to justify his ‘truth’. The Bible has siad and Christians believe that, “the truth shall set you free”. As we learn more of the emailgate fiasco and the shenanigans of its twists and turns, it appears that Dr. Rowley’s integrity is in tact and his coolness under fire has earned him the respect that he so rightfully deserves. The more Kamla, Anand, Israel, Moonilal and now Zainool speak, the more it appears that the contents of the email is true. As a matter of fact I believe that what KAMLA is more confirmation of the truth of the existence of the emails than Dr. Rowley’s defense of it.
    Alfred Whitney Griswold offers some advice to people like Kamla when he said, “Self-respect cannot be hunted. It cannot be purchased. It is never for sale. It cannot be fabricated out of public relations. It comes to us when we are alone, in quiet moments, in quiet places, when we suddenly realize that, knowing the good, we have done it; knowing the beautiful, we have served it; knowing the truth, we have spoken it.” It is something for Kamla to ponder, examine what it means to be honest and truthful and try to be honest with the people she serves. Then and only then would she be at peace with herself.

    • Yoruba Israelite

      ” Liars often respond to questions with truthful statements that cast them in a favorable light.”

      Here is the latest example:

      Dealing first with the issue at hand-the controversy surrounding the Integrity Commission-Persad-Bissessar, when questioned, said neither she nor her Government members influenced the outcome of the commission’s decision to terminate its investigation into Emailgate.

      Anna Ramdass, Express, May 23 (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/20150523/news/kamla-denies-interfering)

      Note the careful wording: “neither she nor her Government’s members”. This construction leaves her lawyer, Israel Khan, out of scope of the denial.

      He of course is the one, to all evidence already discussed, who would have done the PM’s bidding to “get to” the IC.

      So her statement may have been true, yet still tell a lie, in terms of the impression it is caclculated to give.

      Asked whether she can swear on the Holy Scriptures that there is no truth to Emailgate-Persad-Bissessar said: “I can and do swear by Almighty God that there is no truth to the so-called Emailgate.

      “I was sure that they were false from the very outset. And today, the evidence from various local and other international indepen­dent organisations have clearly also determined that these e-mails were false,” she said.

      The Prime Minister pointed out the evidence so far, locally and internationally, show the e-mails were fake.

      Here again, she is playing smart with foolishness. The real scope of the denial is that the “emails were fake”, alluding of course to whistle-blower’s typo in rendering the email address, “anan@gmail.com”.

      There is yet to be seen a truly comprehensive denial that addresses not the form, but the substance (thanks to Justice Ventour for that formulation).

      And then there is this:

      [Anna Ramdass-question:] Can you put your head on a block for your fellow colleagues accused in Emailgate?
      [Persad-Bissessar-answer:] I will put my head on a block for nobody.

      Anna Ramdass, Express, May 23 (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/20150523/news/kamla-looks-back-at-five-years-as-pm)

      This was a joking answer, as she then went on to talk about the French revolution and how uncomfortable it was then to have one’s head on the chopping block.

      But all joking aside, she is saying that in the emailgate matter, she is not extending a blanket denial to embrace all her fellow-accused. Hmmm… May we infer that one or the other of them may end up under the proverbial bus … if it has to come to that? After all, every pawn is sacrifical grist to save the king.

      What may we infer? She can swear that the emails (as to form) are fake. But she cannot put her head on the chopping block for her fellow-accused. Well, if (as to substance) the emails are false, and are indeed a fabrication in the true sense, then the innocence of one implies the innocence of all, and conversely, the guilt of one implies the guilt of all. Therefore, why not come right out and have her denial embrace all of her co-accused?

      Is there a consciousness of guilt, perhaps? And she is, however jokingly, setting up a pawn sacrifice?

      I have not caught her out yet in the revealing little lie, as I have her lawyer Israel Khan, and the IC Chairman, Justic Zainool Hosein. But this her little joke about chopping blocks may be equally revealing.

      In any event, it is interesting how much artfulness she had to put into her responses to the softball questions of this reporter.

      May God protect the innocent in this matter, and expose the guilty.

      Shalom.

      “Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked” (Psalm 91:8)

  • Yeah TMan ,but before we touch that our sacred Constitution-dem much wiser ,morally sound ,neo Patriotic,Founding Fathers ,handed down to us -the already disgruntled,national citizenry ,would definitely prefer ,to scrap your PP government.
    Tell your clueless PM,and fellow power mongrels,to call the elections!

Comments are currently closed.