MP for Naparima Rodney Charles is today publicly underscoring the fact that he does not trust the utterances of the Attorney General Faris Al Rawi.
AG Al Rawi is either a stranger to the facts or he ignores them. He is nothing more than a smooth talker who engages in obfuscation. He repeatedly casts aspersions on the characters of those perceived as political opponents and all confidence in him has been lost as both an MP and an AG.
Recently in Parliament, the AG went on a long winded, false, misleading, shameful rant against my good self which was unbecoming of one holding high office.
On multiple occasions he has used a tactic where he completely ignores the truth, spins a web of tales which are the complete opposite of what was said, and then peddles it as fact.
Specifically, during the debate on Legal Notice 185 concerning sanctions against Iran on January 11th, 2019, the AG deliberately ignored that I acknowledged three times during my contribution that Security Council Resolution 2231 was applicable to Iran and therefore the debate.
In particular I said, “The relevant resolution is Resolution 2231 which is the only resolution on Iran that is recognized by the Security Council.” (Hansard Jan 11th, 2019, p. 208)
Further in my address I reiterated: “In Resolution 2231 (2015), which is the only one that is applicable in existence right now.” (Hansard, Jan 11th, 2019, p. 211)
On the third occasion in the same speech I said, “The resolution, 2231, retained some restrictions on ballistic missile activities and arms sales.” (Hansard, Jan 11th, 2019, p.216)
Ignoring these three acknowledgements, the AG went on to base his entire 20 minute response on the falsehood that I had said that SC Resolution 2231 was not applicable:
“Naparima says “it doh exist”, the UN website generates it and today, the same list, 2231 of 2015 list pops up and Naparima “cyar pick up ah phone”. You know, we provided for Internet in this Chamber, we provided for the ability to access to research.” (Al-Rawi Hansard, Jan 11th 2019, p.227)
He skipped over the argument that the preamble of the Legal Notice failed to acknowledge that UN Security Council resolutions 1696, 1737, 1747, 1803, 1835 and 1929 were no longer in force and were therefore incorrectly used as a basis for the legislation. This fact was confirmed in a meeting which I held in New York last month with senior UN officials.
In another example, during the March 11th 2016 debate on the Family and Children Division Bill, I stressed that the PNM had left the Children’s Act languishing since 12th October 2000, when it was assented to in Parliament until it was proclaimed in May 2015 by the PP Government. His attempts to use amendments to the unproclaimed Act were obfuscatory at best and totally irrelevant at worst. The AG must know that an unproclaimed Bill is just what it is – unproclaimed.
It is clear that from his track record, we either have an AG who from time to time gets the basics of the legislative process wrong or we have one who, in his exuberance to defend his party’s record, overlooks the facts and the statements made by parliamentarians resulting in repeated inaccuracies in his presentations.
What is unforgivable is that he uses his winding up speeches to conclude with inaccuracies.
MP for Naparima.