Friday 10 July, 2020

Rowley slams Law Association's pursuit of Chief Justice as 'political'

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley says the Law Association's (LATT) decision to launch judicial proceedings against him for his failure to appoint a tribunal to probe allegations into the Chief Justice as political.

On Friday, LATT voted in favour of the move while Dr Rowley was at the United Nations General Assembly in the United States.

"This matter involving the Law Association and the way they've been conducting their business here, I have no hesitation in saying that this matter has lost any public interest, purity, and it is a political matter."

The Prime Minister recalled that he refused an invitation from LATT to be a witness in the matter but said he took action when he received information from the association's meeting.

Using taxpayers money, the Prime Minister said he sought out advice from an external Queen's Council, the result of which he communicated to LATT.

"I didn't want any advice from anybody here because that would automatically have been seen to be tainted because it involves sides and divisions. I got advice from an English QC who has no reason to take sides in Trinidad and Tobago. There is no requirement in the law for me to do that, it was out of a responsibility in the office that I did that. Having got the advice, I made a decision and I immediately transmitted that decision to the Law Association and I remain cloaked in the authority of the constitution that the decision to invoke a tribunal is a decision to be made by the Prime Minister."

Dr Rowley said comments on his decision have been "vulgar" and "obscene".

He also said this lawsuit against him is, in fact, against the citizens of Trinidad and Tobago as he will not spend a penny out of pocket.

"This lawsuit of suing the Prime Minister and Rowley being sued not costing me one cent. It is costing you the taxpayer; it is you the taxpayer who will now be having to pay the millions of dollars in legal fees to carry on this political charade. As a taxpayer myself, I just hope that if and when the law is used and it comes to an end and there are liabilities to be paid that the taxpayer is recompensed."

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