Friday, December 21, 2012

Rowley says President must take PM to court if she refuses to answer questions on Section 34

Keith Rowley: "As long as we have remedies available to us we will resort to those remedies."
Keith Rowley told reporters Thursday President Max Richards has a "duty" to take Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar to court if she refuses to comply with a request from the president to provide answers on Section 34.

Rowley made the point at a media conference. "It can be looked at as a failure to perform her duty and the matter can be taken to the courts for an order of mandamus,” Rowley said.

He added that such an order would dictate that the judiciary examine the situation and determine whether Persad-Bissessar had satisfied the requirements of her office and discharged her duty. 

“This is the remedy available with respect of carrying out a duty for any office-holder, including the Prime Minister," he stated.

Rowley also called on the President to reveal the details of the correspondence between him and the PM on the matter. However a media release from the office of the president made it clear that such matters are not made public. 

The release stated, “It is to be noted that a letter from His Excellency the President to the Honourable Leader of the Opposition was introduced into the public domain by the Office of the Leader of the Opposition." 

Persad-Bissessar told reporters Thursday she has responded to the president. "I confirm that I did respond to him. I responded to him since sometime last week. We have confirmation on receipt of my response to His Excellency from his Office. Since that time I have had no further communication or correspondence from him," she said.

She added that the matter between herself and the President is confidential and it would be inappropriate of her to breach that confidential cover. "Should it become so necessary we will deal with it. I have not heard from His Excellency since then and I would prefer not to breach the confidentiality of a Head of State and a head of government correspondence," she said.

Rowley is insisting that the President tell the public the details of the correspondence with the Prime Minister so that the population could be satisfied that the offices of President and Prime Minister were functioning appropriately. 

“We are not going to accept this concluded in secrecy or this is abandoned out of frustration. We will leave no stone unturned. As long as we have remedies available to us we will resort to those remedies,” Rowley said.

Several legal experts have disagreed with Rowley's position.
Read the story: Legal experts say Max went too far in writing the PM
Related story: President should have asked questions before signing Section 34 proclamation

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai