Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Jack refused to travel to US, Canada and Haiti while serving in Government: Kamla

Kamla Persad-Bissessar said on Monday Jack Warner refused to travel on Government Business on several occasions while he was Minister of National Security. 

"These included, matters where the Minister of National Security would have been required to attend whether it be in Washington, Toronto, New York and even Haiti," she said. 

Persad-Bissessar was speaking at the UNC's Monday Night Forum at the Vishnu Boys Hindu College in Caroni. She also stated that Warner is still the subject of a police investigation with respect to the alleged flying squad at the Ministry of National Security.

"Serious statements have been made about this matter by those close to it and which statements are also in the public domain. He has admitted that both he and his family are subject of an inquiry by the Government of the US into a range of corporate white collar criminal offences under Federal Jurisdiction in the US," she said. "I have said that should Mr. Warner have his named cleared, he will be re-instated." 

The UNC political leader said as PM she had to protect the integrity of the government and take action to ensure that "the principles and values which you supported in 2010 remain intact".

She acted based on the most credible information at her disposal and that she  acted "without fear or favor and devoid of any personal emotions and looking at the bigger picture" instead of the narrow confines of the personal.
"We came into government on a platform of decent government and integrity and it is my duty to protect those values," she said as she outlined a series of issues that she said are important to understand the situation.

She said Warner was not fired. He resigned on his own volition as a result of matters involving him which are still in the public domain, she added
"The matters as you know relate to his association with FIFA which to date, he has not provided compelling evidence to refute the allegations answered. 

"We cannot separate those matters from his position as a Minister since it has the potential to do damage that we cannot repair to the government and the image of our country," Persad-Bissessar said. He also noted that he unilaterally took the decision to resign as chairman of the UNC and as the MP for Chaguanas West.

"I accepted, as is my right as your leader and your Prime Minister," Persad-Bissessar declared.

She accused Warner of being respectful to the people of Chaguanas West by resigning one of the safest UNC seats and then asking people to vote him back. 

The UNC leader asked why it is that Warner planned to hold a meeting on Friday to ask people what direction to take when he did not consult them before quitting as the MP.

"Where is the loyalty to the party that gave birth to his political career and more so, loyalty to you, members of the UNC and the Partnership," the PM asked.

Warner announced earlier in the evening that he would run as a candidate in the July 29 byelection and Persad-Bissessar noted that in her speech. She suggested that Warner was being dishonest by calling the people of Chaguanas West to tell him what to do but days before that that he had already made a decision.

"Tonight he has stated that he would run as a candidate against Khadijah... which means he is contesting against your party," she said. "Anyone who stands against the UNC stands against the UNC and every single one of us because united we stand, divided we fall... Let the house of the Rising Sun stand as we go forward!"

She said, "What kind of consultation is that? That is an insult to the people of Chaguanas West." 

Persad-Bissessar said, "The matters involving him are clearly not limited to Chaguanas West – they involve the nation...I stand on the side of public integrity, accountability, credibility and transparency. 

"None of this has been easy for me to tell you tonight but you have asked for answers and I am as I always strive to do, share the reasons behind my decisions.
The former MP abandoned you and abandoned the Party," she said.

Persad-Bissessar also addressed another issue. "I have also heard, people saying that I am biting the hand that fed me," she said.

"I am not for rent or for sale...I depended on you for moral and other support. Let no one come today and claim that they fed me during that campaign," the UNC leader said. Let no one tell you they made me Prime Minister. The only people who made me Prime Minister are the people of Trinidad and Tobago."

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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