Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Guest commentary: Rowley playing high stakes game. Would he walk away on losing?

The Honourable Leader of the Opposition, Dr. Keith Rowley, has presented a string of 31 emails from one unnamed source seeking to impugn the government’s credibility on the Section 34 issue but his numbers don’t seem to add up. 

As a person seeking to be the next prime minster of this country one would expect that in his official actions he would display certain basic qualities such as circumspection, respect for the country’s office holders, respect for our international reputation and relationships and most of all respect for our people and their Parliament. 

As the next few days and weeks progress I am sure that a lot more will be revealed on this e-mail issue. However, setting aside the question of the authenticity of the emails, there are certain important questions left unanswered in Dr. Rowley’s email “bombshell.”

There are sections of the society that remain with lurking doubts about whether they have received full disclosure on the Section 34 issue and for that section of the society the alleged emails revealed by Dr. Rowley may have a ring of truth. 

However, in our politics, the population has long come to realize that very few things can be taken at face value. It is for this reason that the reasonable citizen must have legitimate concerns about the veracity of Dr. Rowley’s revelations.

Accepting the press reports of Dr. Rowley’s presentation to the House as accurate, the following questions arise:

  1. If in September 2012 he had reliable information that the life of reporter Denyse Renne was in danger, did he then inform her of this and did he make a report to the police so that they could provide her with the necessary protection? 
  2. If in September 2012 he had reliable information that illegal bugs were planted in the office of the DPP, did he inform Mr. Gaspard of this so that at the very least, a sweep could be done to detect same and charge those responsible? 
  3. If in September 2012 he had reliable information that there was a plot to bait and trick the DPP into giving up his office, did he inform the DPP of this? 
  4. If in September 2012 he had reliable information that the Chief Justice and Chairman of the Judicial and Legal Services Commission (“JLSC”) was perceived to be pliable and accommodating to the Cabinet did he inform the Chief Justice or other members of the JLSC of this? 
  5. If in September 2012 he had reliable information that there was a plot by senior government officials to accept bribes and thereby evade their treaty responsibilities to the Government of the United States did he inform the US Government of this? Did he not think it of the utmost urgency to bring this information to the DPP’s attention? 
All of these questions arise from Dr. Rowley’s presentation and unfortunately they were left unanswered.

As a responsible leader and aspiring Prime Minister one would think that Dr. Rowley would first test the credibility of his source before going public with such damning allegations against so many of our office-holders. But if he had belief in the credibility of his source then why wait six months before revealing this information to the country? 

Why wait six months before calling upon the DPP and Integrity Commission to investigate? Why did we not hear anything about these emails from the former President? 

The former President was certainly not perceived to be a friend of the present government. At the very least one would have expected mention of these emails in the former President’s now infamous “Section 81” letter.

If at the end of the day Dr. Rowley did not a reasonable belief in the veracity of his source and he did not believe that his information was reliable, it was highly irresponsible for him proceed as he did. 

It is highly improper to make allegations as serious as he made and not have a reasonable belief in same. At the end of the day it is the population that loses out since it is their business that has been deferred.

As one commentator has stated, Dr. Rowley is playing a game of high stakes poker where he has gone all in. Will he have to walk away from the table totally broke? I guess we will soon find out.

Larry N. Lalla

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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