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Friday 6 December 2019
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Rowley tells Thomas: Own your comments

Photo by Jeff Mayers
Photo by Jeff Mayers

THE PRIME MINISTER has doubled down on his threat to sue UNC councillor for Febeau/Bourg Mulatresse Devon Thomas, despite the latter issuing an apology to Dr Rowley for his comments at a recent UNC rally.

Thomas launched a stinging attack against the PM, repeating allegations originally made by other opposition members in the run-up to the 2015 general election. He apologised to the PM and UNC leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar on Sunday after a backlash.

Rowley, however, said he has not seen the apology and that the matter is being dealt with by his attorneys.

"When you do things like this, you can't disown it," Rowley said to Thomas and the Opposition, after he voted in the Diego Martin district at the International School of Port of Spain on Monday morning.

"This is a matter that the UNC created and endorsed, even in the Parliament. You may recall that when Vernella Alleyne (Toppin) came to the Parliament with it, under parliamentary privilege, she was congratulated by Mrs Persad-Bissessar and Roodal Moonilal.

"So I'm not surprised that they continued and made it a campaign issue.

Asked if the opposition leader should also apologise, Rowley replied, "I'm not interested in anything Mrs Persad-Bissessar does."

He added, however, "You cannot walk away from it. It's a stain that is indelible.

"So that gentleman was just trying to please his handlers. This is not a new thing, you know. This is about the tenth time that the UNC has tried to put somebody in a position to try to besmirch my character. In some instances, they use the Parliament. In other instances they are anonymous. But the issue is an issue they have been working on consistently.

"I've been in public life since 1980 and the UNC has consistently, at the highest level, seeked (sic) to besmirch my character. And if they have run afoul of the law, there's a place for that.

"The one thing that is standard here is that they always find some black person to try to come and pretend as if they have a problem with me. It is usually somebody who represents the lowest of the low, who will behave like that to please the handlers, seeking their approval. This is not new.

"And Mr Thomas will report to the court when he gets his notice."

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