Thursday 22 March, 2018

Opposition calls on DPP to hold PM accountable for emailgate probe

Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar is calling for Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley to be held responsible for statements he made which led to the emailgate probe in 2013, after the outcome of the police probe revealed that "nothing of substance" was found.

Persad-Bissessar issued a statement on Wednesday, after Acting Police Commissioner Stephen Williams, during TV6's beyond the tape, provided an update on the controversial probe. 

Addressing the issue, the Opposition Leader said the investigation proved that the Prime Minister is unfit for office. She said he must face the consequences of his actions and called on the Director of Public Prosecutions to intervene.

"This is a serious matter and the person who is now holding the office of Prime Minister, who deliberately misled the Parliament and attempted to impugn members of the Government which I led –Dr. Keith Rowley - must be held accountable.  I call on the DPP to take action in this matter."

She accused the Prime Minister of attempting to mislead the parliament and the people of T&T, noting that she believed the emails to be fake since the "spurious" allegations were first made in the Parliament. 

"His actions have now been proven to be nothing more than attempts to malign me during my term as Prime Minister, as well as members of the then People’s Partnership administration."

Persad-Bissessar once again questioned why Dr Rowley did not take his concerns to the police to have the investigation launched even after he claimed to have the information for six months.

She reiterated that it was, in fact, her who referred the matter to the Commissioner of Police, Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and Integrity Commission.  

She also recalled that in June 2013, a month after the allegations were brought to the Parliament, US forensic computer scientist Jon Berryhill concluded that the alleged emails were “of a fraudulent nature.”   She also noted that in August 2014, Google Inc, through a certified affidavit, indicated that the emails did not exist.  She said further, in 2015, while Prime Minister, the Integrity Commission cleared her and the Parliament of any impropriety with respect to the fake email allegations.

She called on the Prime Minister to resign and call an early election so that the people of Trinidad and Tobago can elect a team that can return good governance to our country.

The emailgate allegations were first made in May, 2013. Then Opposition leader, Dr Rowley read a thread of 31 email messages in Parliament purporting to be a conversation between four people, whose email accounts were similar to those of the then Opposition regime; prime minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar, attorney general Anand Ramlogan, national security advisor Gary Griffith and government minister Suruj Rambachan.

The emails involved a major conspiracy against Director of Public Prosecutions Roger Gaspard, a plot to harm and discredit reporter Denyse Renne and the payment of monies in exchange for freedom by an unnamed person.