PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, May 1, CMC – The main opposition United National Congress (UNC) Wednesday said the detention of two of its members, including former attorney general Anand Ramlogan, is a plan by the Trinidad and Tobago government to “distract the public”.
Police Commissioner Gary Griffith said that while he could not provide details surrounding the arrest of Ramlogan and attorney Gerald Ramdeen, he confirmed that the Anti-Corruption Investigation Bureau (ACIB) was “spearheading investigation”.
In a statement, the UNC said that while it has taken note of the reports surrounding the detention of the two attorneys, it is not “privy to the details of these reports but we wish to repeat we do not condone wrongdoing of any kind”.
The party said that it has “no doubt that this desperate and failing Rowley administration is searching for a way to distract the public’s attention away from their record of failure over the last four years.
“The United National Congress knows what every person in Trinidad and Tobago knows; that the nation is in crisis, and that citizens are fed up, frustrated and angry with the Rowley government,” it added.
Ramlogan served as attorney general between 2010-15 when the UNC formed the biggest partner in the coalition People’s Partnership government of then prime minister Kamla Persad Bissessar, while Ramdeen is a front line member of the UNC in the Senate.
The Trinidad Express newspaper, quoting sources said that Ramlogan is being questioned in connection with a series of financial transactions involving legal fees during the period that he served as attorney general.
The paper further said Ramdeen, who turned himself over to the police after learning about a warrant for his arrest, will also be questioned in relation to this same matter of the legal fees.
The Trinidad Express reported that legal fees paid by the Ministry of the Attorney General during Ramlogan’s tenure ballooned from an average of TT$30-TT$40 million (One TT dollar=US$0.16 cents) to an average of TT$1.4 billion.
The paper said that the investigations had received the cooperation of several jurisdictions.