Facts are stubborn things and even twelve years later Rowley seems to have, once again, deliberately forgotten the report from the Manning-led PNM Administration’s era about its illegal wiretapping cannot be undone.
On the PNM’s political platform last Tuesday evening, Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley responded to claims from Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar that the Government was spying on people in all walks of life as a lie.
The Prime Minister recalled that Persad-Bissessar, as Prime Minister in November 2010, made the same allegations.
But Rowley cannot come now in 2022 and compare Persad-Bissessar’s claims to spying as a similar allegation she made in 2010.
It was in November 2010 that as Prime Minister, Persad-Bissessar told Parliament, “I was, therefore, shocked when I received a report, less than two weeks ago, which suggested that this agency, the Security Intelligence Agency (SIA) may also be involved in political wiretapping.”
The target of the SSA’s illegal wiretapping included politicians, judges, trade unionists, entertainment personalities and journalists. According to Hansard, then Opposition MP and current Finance Minister Colm Imbert is quoted as saying, “I used to say that all the time.”
And what was the response of the then PNM Political/Opposition Leader Dr Rowley.
Rowley told the media that Persad-Bissessar did nothing wrong when she advised Parliament that the phones of many prominent citizens were illegally tapped by the Security Intelligence Agency (SIA).
Rowley, in attempting to distance the PNM from the wiretapping scandal by the secret spy unit, went further and urged the population not to blame the People’s National Movement for the actions of one man, former Prime Minister Patrick Manning.
How then can Rowley now claim that one of the first things Persad-Bissessar did as Prime Minister was to destroy the security system in this country by “alleging that she was being spied upon?”
The SSA was immediately dismantled by the People’s Partnership Administration after its illegal wiretapping activities were discovered.
In fact, both Rowley and Imbert agreed with Persad-Bissessar that the Manning-led Administration was spying on citizens and Rowley even apologized for the PNM’s role in this.
Rowley went further on Tuesday night by accusing the Opposition Leader of “leading a handful of criminals around the country who the police looking for.”
How does the Prime Minister know that the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service is looking for “a handful of criminals around the country” who are being “led” by the Opposition Leader?
Who are the “handful of criminals” Rowley is referring to?
Has the TTPS reached out the Opposition Leader and requested her assistance in locating and/or arresting these “criminals” who the Prime Minister has publicly stated she is “leading?”
Facts are stubborn things and even twelve years later Rowley seems to have, once again, deliberately forgotten that the report from the Manning-led PNM Administration’s era about its illegal wiretapping cannot be rewritten nor undone.