Apr 28, 2018 News
Minister of State Joseph Harmon has rejected and dismissed as spurious and outrageous, allegations that the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Ms. Shalimar Ali-Hack, was instructed by a top official from the Ministry of the Presidency (MOTP) to dismiss the private criminal charges filed against Minister of Health, Ms. Volda Lawrence and Minister of Social Cohesion, Dr. George Norton, who is Minister Lawrence’s predecessor. This allegation was carried by an online news outfit, Citizens Report on April 24 with the headline “DPP was “instructed” by MOTP to drop misconduct charges against Ministers Lawrence and Norton – source”.
“That is a malicious report, nobody can instruct the DPP. The DPP is an independent office and the DPP exercises her responsibilities without interference from anyone. I can say categorically, that nobody, no senior personnel from the Ministry of the Presidency instructed the DPP, so that is a malicious report,” the Minister said.
The charges, which were filed last week by the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) are seen by the Government, as an attempt by the Opposition to detract the attention from the charges that have been filed against PPP/C officials, former Minister of Finance, Dr. Ashni Singh and former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of National Industrial and Commercial Investment Limited (NICIL), Winston Brassington.
“This is all part of the PPP’s scheme… The DPP has exercised her right under the law and now they are finding ways and means of trying to vilify her by saying that she acted under the influence of a direction from the Ministry of the Presidency, when in fact, this is not so. It is totally wrong, this is false and ridiculous,” Minister Harmon said.
A statement issued by the Minister last week, regarding this same matter stated that “the Guyanese public will not be swayed by the legal shenanigans of the PPP, which, in effect, make a mockery of the legal system.”
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