Ramjattan’s “more charges” utterance validates PPP’s claims of political witch-hunting – Nandlall

first_imgOne day after Alliance For Change (AFC) Chairman and Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan said the coalition Administration will continue to prosecute more former Government officials under the previous People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) regime, even if it is perceived as political witch-hunting, former Attorney General Anil Nandlall posited that the Minister’s utterance has reaffirmed his party’s position all along.“Minister Khemraj Ramjattan has emphatically confirmed what we have been saying all along, that is, that the criminal charges that are being filed against former Ministers and officials of the PPP Government, are politically inspired and driven,” Nandlall asserted.At a press conference on Friday, Ramjattan admitted he is well aware of the perception that Government was victimising political opponents but he insisted that they will continue along that path.Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan“I am aware that the prosecution of a predecessor who belongs to a competing political party, is likely to be perceived as politically motivated… We have evidence, it’s warranted and so it will move on,” he said, adding that “otherwise members of this Government may feel the need to practice selling State properties without the lawful procedures. We cannot allow that.”Last year, several former Government officials including former President and current Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo were hauled in for questioning over the acquisition of lands on the East Coast of Demerara. Moreover, last month charges were brought against former Finance Minister, Dr Ashni Singh and former National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) Chief Executive Officer Winston Brassington by the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) in relation to the sale of three plots of lands to investors.However, Nandlall, who is among the battery of lawyers representing the two former Government officials, pointed out that in a normal democracy, which is governed by the rule of law, the Executive Government and Ministers have no business whatsoever, in the institution and of criminal charges. These matters, he posited, fall within the exclusive remit of the constitutional agencies, that is, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and the Guyana Police Force, which are functionally autonomous and independent agencies that are strongly insulated in law from any type of political and ministerial influence or interference.“So how does Minister Ramjattan know that there are more charges to be filed against former Ministers? Does he also know if and what charges are going to be filed by Police against every Guyanese? I am sure he does not. But he knows that charges will be filed against former Ministers because he is part of a political directorate that is instructing behind the scenes, that these charges be filed,” the former Attorney General insisted.Nandlall went on to remind that Ramjattan had admitted publicly of knocking glasses with British Advisor to SOCU, Dr Sam Sittlington; Head of SOCU, Sydney James; and a diplomat at city nightspot on the evening one day after when Jagdeo along with former Head of Presidential Secretariat, Dr Roger Luncheon, former Home Affairs Minister Clement Rohee and other leaders of the PPP/C were arrested and taken to SOCU.“When Sittlington’s contract ended, Ramjattan boasted in the press that he will bring him back because he has a lot of work to do. Indeed, Sittlington is now back. Mr Ramjattan is an experienced lawyer. As a result, I know that he knows that what he is doing is wrong. However, hatred, political vengeance and his desire for revenge, have destroyed his objectivity and his sense of reason. But I wish to remind him of an old saying that every rope, no matter how long, has an end,” Nandlall said.last_img read more

Mesut Ozil on target as Arsenal hammer Bournemouth in Premier League

first_imgArsenal’s Mesut Ozil marked his first Premier League start of 2019 with a goal and an assist as his side hammered Bournemouth 5-1 in their Premier League clash at the Emirates Stadium on Wednesday.The German attacking midfielder had not started a game for Arsenal since their 1-1 draw away to Brighton & Hove Albion on December 26 due to a knee problem, but showed no ring rust as he rattled home the first goal in the fourth minute.Ozil, who has become a fairly peripheral figure during manager Unai Emery’s tenure, then turned provider for the home side in the 27th minute.He drew out Bournemouth goalkeeper Artur Boruc before playing a simple pass to allow Henrikh Mkhitaryan to fire into an empty net.Midfielder Matteo Guendouzi threw Bournemouth a lifeline shortly afterwards as he lost the ball on the edge of his own box to Dan Gosling, who squared it to Lys Moussett for a simple finish to make it 2-1.However, the revival was short-lived as Laurent Koscielny put Arsenal 3-1 up just after the break and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang made it four just before the hour mark, finishing a counter-attack by rounding Boruc and slotting the ball home.Substitute Alexandre Lacazette completed the rout by scoring from a free kick 12 minutes from the end to hand Bournemouth their fourth defeat in their last five league games.It was Arsenal’s third straight league victory, with Emery delighted to welcome Ozil back into the starting line-up as he made a number of changes ahead of Saturday’s derby against Tottenham Hotspur.advertisement”(He was) good, good. I think he is happier with us. I am now also proud of every player, and the same with Mesut. He helped us with his quality and work, to be organised, and he can play in different systems,” Emery enthused.The win means that Tottenham, who remain third despite a 2-0 loss to Chelsea, are now only four points ahead of the fourth-placed Gunners going into Saturday’s showdown.Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe, reflecting on how his side have not won a league away match since October, said: “We pride ourselves on being very honest and we didn’t do the supporters justice tonight. I really feel for them.”Also Read | Luis Suarez nets brace as Barcelona thrash Real Madrid to reach Copa del Rey finalAlso Watch:last_img read more