Cops visit Jagdeo over `offending’ statements

Two senior policemen earlier today visited Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo at his Church Street office about alleged offensive statements he made about government officials inclusive of the president, in March.

PPP party executive Anil Nandlall speaking to the media on Jagdeo’s behalf explained that he recently made contact with the Crime Chief after he received word that the police wanted to speak to Jagdeo. “The Crime Chief yesterday confirmed that the police wished to interview Jagdeo and we fixed a time and a venue mutually convenient.” That time was 11am and the place was Jagdeo’s office.

He said that Jagdeo opted to provide a statement in writing in which he outlined his responsibilities to speak publicly on matters of unconstitutionality, bad governance, misuse and abuse of political power by the government and public officers. He reserved his right not to comment further on the matter.

He said that the ranks did not specifically say what crime they are investigating and as such no allegation was put to Jagdeo.

“All they did was to solicit a response from him in relation to statements they alleged he has made,” he added.

Among the “offending” statements Nandlall said were the chase them out comments and Jagdeo allegedly calling the president, prime minister and Indigenous People’s Affairs Minister Sydney Allicock, ‘jackasses’.

Nandlall insisted that what has occurred is “an abuse of power on the part of the police force” and stressed that people should have a freedom to speak and criticize government officials.

He later informed that the party will now look at the “many” statements made by senior functionaries of the government including the president and “we will lodge reports to the police where we feel that graver statements have been made and we are going to request investigations as well.”

He singled out a minister who he claimed has called for ‘war’ if no house to house registration is done.

Party supporters and a number of attorneys were present during the brief engagement.