Padarath said that the contents of the article appears to put Minister Darryl Smith at the center of the allegations of sexual harassment and no amount of deflection or claim of ignorance from the government could change that.
He added that in the public interest the Prime Minister must act swiftly to remove both Minister Smith and the Attorney General if public confidence is to be retained in the offices that are occupied by both Smith and Al-Rawi.
In response to a series of questions posed on the matter to the Minister of Sport in the Parliament last week, Al Rawi instead answered for the Minister. It is now public knowledge that the office of the Attorney General assisted in brokering the terms and conditions for the “sex suit”. It is alleged that the Attorney General is now named as an accessory to an alleged cover up of such a serious claim.
Padarath said the role of the Attorney General in this matter also comes into question. As one of the custodians of the constitution, the Attorney General has become a party to this matter by using legal tactics in an alleged conspiracy to exonerate and clean up a claim brought against a cabinet colleague. Further, the Attorney General must have known by the documentation provided by the Ministry of Sport and Youth Affairs that Minister Smith was at the center of the allegations. Did the Attorney general purposely and willfully conceal this information from the cabinet and the Prime Minister in expending taxpayers dollars for an alleged “sex suit”. Did the Attorney General abdicate his responsibility to the state and willfully mislead the population on this matter?
Padarath said while the allegations were reprehensible, the Attorney General sought to distract the population from the allegations of sexual exploitation and the identity of an alleged sexual predator by abusing his office. He said while non-disclosure agreements were common in the private sector this was not the case for the public sector because tax payers have a right to know how their money is being used.
The Princes Town MP slammed the Prime Minister for his flippant approach to such a serious matter that deals with the rights of women and the issue of sexual harassment in the workplace. He called on the Prime Minister to take decisive and swift action on both Smith and Al-Rawi by relieving them of their portfolios with immediate effect. He said to do otherwise would give the impression that despite all the damaging and damning information in the public domain, that the government sees sexual exploitation as a non-story.