Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar yesterday attempted to extricate herself from the email scandal with information supposedly sourced from Google. Again. For the third time. Seriously.
All Mr Live Wire is saying is that Google apparently has more branches than Linda’s Bakery.
“This letter proves Mr Rowley created fake e-mails for bogus charges,” said Persad-Bissessar yesterday. “He must apologise to all the people he lied to.”
For most other people, Persad-Bissessar’s latest “revelation” proved something else entirely.
Her private sleuth, Computerlaw Group director Jack Russo, said he searched all emails “for the period September 1st 2012 to September 31st 2012” and gave the Prime Minister a clean bill of health. Russo’s letter started off by addressing Persad-Bissessar at her “email@example.com” account but then went on to suggest searches were done on “firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Mr Live Wire isn’t sure which is worse. That our Prime Minister’s defence for one of Parliament’s most serious scandals hinges on the testimony of a man who does not know how many days there are in September and isn’t sure which email address he should be investigating.
That the former Minister of Education didn’t think anyone in Trinidad and Tobago would notice.
Or that the self-declared Persad-Bissessar SC doesn’t appreciate that most people in Golden Grove right now would probably be declared innocent too if they were also allowed to investigate themselves.
To be fair to the Prime Minister, once told about the errors in the timeframe of the investigation and the emails supposedly probed, she conceded that once Russo’s letter was ‘found to be false, the substance also was.’
“If the backbone collapses,” said Persad-Bissessar, “the whole body collapses.”
Oops. My mistake. That was the logic that Persad-Bissessar used to condemn Rowley’s batch of controversial emails.
She explained the obvious flaws in her suspicious response to Rowley’s suspicious emails with: “Typo doesn’t change facts in letter. There could be 100 days in September, doesn’t change fact that Mr Rowley read fake e-mails in Parliament.”
Responsible governance, decorum and accountability might all be on their death beds. But irony has never been better.
In the meantime, Google and Microsoft both publicly reveal data shared with countries on the internet. Google had one request from Trinidad and Tobago between July and December 2013 for five user accounts in which no data information was provided.
And Microsoft had one request between January to June 2013 and another from July to December of the same year. In both cases, information on two accounts was sought and only “subscriber/transactional data” was relayed with no content.
The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) claimed to have received information from Google on 3 March 2015 that was “voluminous in nature”, which, two months later, they still have not made a pronouncement on.
“Email-gate” apparently did not fall under the TTPS’ total policing drive. The Integrity Commission has also failed to clarify the matter.
It does raise the question: If the Police Service and the Integrity Commission, with all the resources available to them, are still unable to verify the authenticity of these emails and its contents after two years of investigations; then how the hell could the People’s Partnership reasonably expect the Opposition Leader to know?!
Meanwhile, Persad-Bissessar continues to bowl her Google-ys with bent logic; wilfully blind to the fact that even impartial citizens are now calling her for chucking.
On 24 August 2014, Ramlogan claimed to have cracked the case with information from Computerlaw’s Christopher Sargent. Then, on 27 April 2015, Persad-Bissessar claimed to have in her possession “all the Google records pursuant to a court order in the case filed by the Integrity Commission.” While Russo’s own error-strewn letter was delivered on 4 May 2015.
Mr Live Wire think it is time for her suspect action to be ratified by the relevant panel. The electorate is waiting Tanty Kams.
Editor’s Note: Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar today published an apology supposedly by Jack Russo for the aforementioned errors.
Mr Live Wire prefers not to say too much about the signature on the new document. But even ex-TTFA marketing officer Darren Millien, the alleged $400,000 licensing fee man, might have been embarrassed by that effort.