In a press statement yesterday, Griffith categorically denied Rowley’s claims, even denying one claim that he had referred to Attorney General Anand Ramlogan as his boss in an email. Griffith called on Rowley to make his claims outside of Parliament, where he would not be shielded from slander lawsuits.
“Further to the irresponsible and deeply unfortunate statements made by the Leader of the Opposition about emails being sent between the Attorney General and myself, I hereby challenge him to make the same statements outside of the cover of parliamentary privilege,” Griffith said as he categorically denied the allegations.
“The Leader of the Opposition made spurious statements based on a trail of emails he claims were transmitted between me and the Honourable Attorney General,” Griffith said. He said the emails were a hoax.
“The so-called trail of emails are littered with inaccuracies and the following are just simple points to show that this entire scheme was a hoax, and has caused irreparable damage to the image of the country by those who have an insatiable craving for power at all costs, inclusive of via lies and bogus emails,” Griffith said. He said Ramlogan was not his boss.
“As stated in one of the false emails, the Attorney General is not my boss, so I would not refer to him as such, nor would or could I give him instructions on how to operate, as was stated in the list of bogus messages,” Griffith said. He said Rowley was “set up”.
“It is quite obvious that Mr Rowley was set up, probably by elements in his own political party who want him out, upon which he easily took the bait, and by him rushing without getting the facts to verify this hoax, has led him to a narrow path with no other option now than to submit his resignation as Leader of the Opposition with immediate effect,” he said. Griffith continued, “This unacceptable action compounds the scant regard the Opposition has for citizens in their continued abuse of parliamentary privilege. If Mr Rowley can be so reckless and unprofessional to call a motion of no confidence on a government, based on emails that were not sent or did not belong to any government official, then he should do the honourable thing and tender his resignation forthwith. He has embarrassed the country with his inappropriate actions.”
He said the style of the text of the emails attributed to the Prime Minister did not fit.
“I have worked side by side with the Prime Minister for three years and she has never used anything remotely close to obscene language,” Griffith said. “I spent over 15 years in the Defence Force as a military officer, inclusive of being in command of the intelligence unit, so I am fully aware of the easy infiltration of emails, so why would I make such a stupid mistake to discuss such matters on emails?”
Griffith said his private information was being intercepted under the PNM. He further denied access to any “intercept activity” by the Strategic Services Agency (SSA).
“I have never had any access to any intercept activity with SSA, and even if someone wanted to, it simply cannot happen based on the Intercept (Act) legislated by the Government to prevent the abuse of such systems, and a re-occurrence of what was done by the previous administration.”
He questioned why Rowley did not report the matter. “Why was this matter not immediately reported to the police, if Mr Rowley claims that he had this information several months ago?” Griffith asked. “Did Mr Rowley have soft copies of these so-called emails, or were these printed emails, which can be done by any person who can just run a trail of bogus emails, as was seen on the blogs with a fabrication of a conversation between two Opposition MPs, using their email addresses?”