19 Aug Peter Bunting statement on Miami Herald Article
I have taken note of an article published in the Miami Herald entitled “Jamaica murder yarn has political ties, with a Scotland Yard twist.“
One of the implied criticisms in the article is that the Ministry of National Security refused witness protection for a would-be key prosecution witness, and because of this the case fell apart. It also speaks to the non-renewal of the contract of ACP Les Green, which ACP Green learnt of in January 2012.
The article provides a time line that could be read as suggesting that these occurred during my incumbency as the Minister of National Security for the PNP Government. I wish to make it abundantly clear that by the time we assumed office in January 2012, these two decisions had already been taken.
The Opposition supports the call in today’s Gleaner editorial that the Government must “…offer the public a credible explanation for that decision to remove any suspicion that its motive was political and an attempt by a government to protect one of its own.”
Under my watch at the Ministry, we developed and passed significant legislation, such as The Criminal Justice (Suppression of Criminal Organizations) Act, and implemented strategic policy initiatives, including the establishment of MOCA, to tackle organized crime and bring down criminal kingpins and corrupt public officials. The position of the administration of which I was a part, and myown position, is that no one is above the law.
Sadly, the Jamaican brand has suffered significant damage in the eyes of the international community due to well-documented attempts to use the weight of political power to prevent a connected person from facing prosecution. We must all hope that lessons have been learnt from the tragic consequences of that corrupt use of power, and that the rule of law will always be allowed to prevail in our country, without fear or favour.