Persad-Bissessar put on a brave face as she greeted reporters at the VIP lounge, Piarco International Airport shortly after she arrived home from a trip to Costa Rica via Miami.
Asked to comment on Acting Commissioner of Police Stephen Williams’ announcement of a police investigation into Ramlogan over allegations leveled against him by Director of the Police Complaints Authority (PCA) David West, Persad-Bissessar said the allegation is “serious and very troubling.”
However, she hastened to add that natural justice dictates that she meets face to face with AG Ramlogan to get the facts. She said that while she was abroad on State business, she was briefed on the issue by then acting PM Errol McLeod.
Commissioner Williams, in a media release, announced that he had ordered a a police probe into an allegation of an attempt to pervert the course of justice made against AG Anand Ramlogan by PCA Director David West.
She said that Ramlogan remains Attorney General having received no resignation from him.
Persad-Bissessar also said she was advised that another senior minister may be involved in the Ramlogan/West issue. She did not name this high-ranking minister although she said she intends to meet with this person as well.
Persad-Bissessar assured that once she meets with the Attorney General and the second senior government minister, and a clearer picture emerges, she will speak further on the issue.
Questioned about calls for House Speaker Wade Mark to step down after his admittance that it was Finance Minister Larry Howai and not the judiciary (as Mark had originally claimed) that had informed him of a lawsuit which he restricted Chaguanas West MP Jack Warner from referring to in his (Warner) no confidence motion against Howai in the Lower House last week Friday, Persad-Bissessar said, “the Prime Minister does not remove the Speaker.”
Saying she was aware of the no confidence motion against Speaker Mark by Warner, the PM said there are specific ways under the Constitution in which a Speaker can be removed and she does not have the power to remove the Speaker.
She said that while she will have to seek legal advice on the Speaker’s statement to the House, it appeared that Speaker Mark did not go wrong with the sub judice rule as covered in the House Standing orders.