PORT OF SPAIN — Minister of Justice Herbert Volney has charged that some cabinet colleagues are out to get him.
Describing them as “mischief-makers”, bent on tarnishing his name, Volney said he had no intention of resigning but was upset at the latest turn of events. He spoke to the T&T Guardian as controversy continues to rage about Section 34 of the Administration of Justice (Indictable Proceedings) Act 2011 which the House of Representatives voted to repeal in a special session on Wednesday.
Fingers have been pointed at Attorney General Anand Ramlogan and Volney over the proclamation of the act, which had the effect of clearing the way for businessmen Ish Galbaransingh and Steve Ferguson to be freed of fraud charges arising out of the Piarco Airport project.
Volney said yesterday: “I know a lot of people want the St. Joseph seat. My own colleagues are out to get me. I know one in particular who has always been on a turf war with me. They have their own political agenda but these things happen in politics.
“There are some who feel threatened by me but I am not threatened by them. I came into politics to serve not for personal gain. If at the end of my term the people of St Joseph want me to return, I will consider returning. I was elected. I was not given a position.”
Volney sounds warning
In warning his cabinet detractors, Volney said: “I have heard some stories that I do not want to believe. I want to say that I am not a money-in-bag minister. “I do not take five and ten per cent cutback in legal fees. My ministry does not have those ties. I took full responsibility for everything. “I explained what and why it happened. No one could dispute anything I said. I challenge anyone to prove otherwise.”
Insisting he did no wrong, Volney said he had no intention of resigning. Describing the move to undermine him as “pure mischief”, Volney added: “You have to work to earn an electoral seat. If they want my job they have to take it from me. I have no intention of giving them my job. “First of all, you have to know the requirements of the job before you get ambitious and take God out of their minds.”
Dismissing claims he benefited from an alleged conspiracy to rush the legislation, Volney said copies of his bank records could prove otherwise.
He said: “I can show my bank account. I took out a mortgage. I am paying out of my nose to maintain my mortgage for my house in St. Joseph.” (Guardian)