Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley yesterday confirmed that Robert Le Hunte is a Trinidad and Tobago citizen and as such, will be re-appointed a senator and Minister of Public Utilities by the end of the week.
“He (Le Hunte) is a citizen of Trinidad and Tobago. Let me make that very clear. He is not a Ghanaian,” he told reporters during a tour of several major infrastructural projects in his Diego Martin West constituency.
Rowley’s confirmation of Le Hunte’s status came two days it was revealed through the Office of the Prime Minister that the career banker was a citizen of Ghana and unsuited to hold the position of Cabinet minister in this country.
Le Hunte was sworn in as a senator and public utilities minister last Thursday during a simple ceremony at President’s House, St Ann’s.
He replaced Rowley, who had held the position of public utilities minister after Port-of-Spain South MP Marlene Mc Donald was fired several months ago.
Rowley yesterday cleared the air on the matter, saying Le Hunte is a TT national who was on temporary assignment in Ghana.
“While he was there, he obtained in part of his residency and acceptance in the community, he obtained Ghanaian citizenship.”
Rowley dismissed the recent faux pas surrounding Le Hunte’s appointment as a “communication glitch.”
“There was a communication glitch in the handling of that development and by having that in place it offended our Constitution,” he said. “That is easily rectified and by him revoking his appointment to preserve his position in Trinidad and Tobago and qualify him to hold the office for which he has been selected for.”
Asked if Le Hunte had provided him with details about his status a a TT citizen, Rowley told reporters: “I have just provided it.”
Pressed to elaborate, he added: “I am saying it was a development that the communication which would have prevented it (appointment) from happening, the communication went awry and it has to be done over.
“ So, a few days of doing over and it will be all right. You couldn’t provide it before you knew what happened.”
The Prime Minister made it clear that Le Hunte will be re-appointed
“So, a rectification is taking place so that we comply with the requirements of the Constitution and it is my intention to re-appoint him as soon as that is done. That will take 72 hours or thereabouts.”