Statement from the Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar
Soon after the Reuters story came to my attention on March 27th 2013, I issued a release from my office stating:
“I will not rely on published reports in the media, but will again seek to get official corroboration of the information now in the public domain before making any determination or pronouncement.”
Later on that same day, I instructed the Minister of Foreign Affairs the Honourable Winston Dookeran to pursue the matter via the established diplomatic channels to obtain the relevant facts and seek clarification on the reported allegations.
I further directed the Attorney General, Anand Ramlogan, to write his counterpart, the US Attorney General, Eric Holder Jr., directly to seek his personal intervention in the matter so that there can be official confirmation of the facts and circumstances surrounding this the alleged investigation.
Unfortunately, whilst there has been great diplomatic cooperation, attempts to elicit further information and clarification have thus far not been successful.
It would be premature if not prejudicial for me to act without any official clarification or confirmation from the US Authorities on this controversial and sensitive matter.
I am committed to upholding the high ethical standards which the public legitimately and rightly expects of my Government, but I am equally mindful that the commitment to the rule of law requires balance and respect for the presumption of innocence .
As Head of the Government, I would make an informed decision in this matter once the facts are established.
Communications and Media Relations Unit
Office of the Prime Minister