Thursday, December 20, 2012

Senate President rules that Warner won't face Privileges Committee

Senate President
Timothy Hamel Smith
Senate President Timothy Hamel-Smith stated on Wednesday that National Security Jack Warner won't have to go before the Privileges Committee for allegedly misleading the Senate.

Opposition Senator Fitzgerald Hinds filed a Motion last month calling for parliament to censure Warner for "knowingly and willfully misleading the Senate."

Warner had stated that the Police Service Commission (PSC) recommended the million-dollar ex-gratia payments to former Police Commissioner Dwayne Gibbs and Deputy Commissioner Jack Ewatski. 

The PSC later denied that, stating that "the issue of such payments does not fall under the Constitutional mandate of the Commission."

Hamel-Smith told the Senate said a prima facie case had not been made out against Warner. He added that he made his decision after reviewing the unrevised Hansard Report on the question.

"In light of the above learning and findings made by me, I rule that a prima facie case of contempt of the Senate has not been made out and therefore there is nothing to be referred to the Privileges Committee since the Minister cannot be said to have deliberately misled the Senate, which is an essential element required to constitute such a contempt as stated at Paragraph 4.1.3 of this ruling and I so rule."

Hamel-Smith said 
in order to constitute a finding that Warner deliberately misled the Senate he required proof "of a very high nature".

He stated, "It is arguable that the Senate was misled but I am not sure whether the proximate cause for this falls on the Minister ignoring the assumption within the questions as is his prerogative, or Senators failing to ask direct questions as they are required to do under the Standing Orders."

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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