Thursday, 14 August 2014

Andrew Lewis and the Erosion of Trust

Today I have a guest posting on former Deputy Andrew Lewis concerning the suspension of the Chief of Police, Graham Power. The reasons for his doing so were mentioned in an "in camera" (secret) States debate, the transcript of which later leaked to the public domain, which is mentioned by former Deputy Daniel Wimberly. 

It is worth noting that in the normal course of events, it is impossible to tell whether States members make misleading remarks in these debates, of which Jersey had many during the tenures of Frank Walker and Terry Le Sueur as Chief Ministers. A notable one which still remains secret is the one in which Pierre Horsfall and his position on the Waterfront Enterprise Board was debated, and Mr Horsfall was upset at the lack of transparency involved.

Guernsey has relatively few; in larger Parliaments, of course, it is pretty well impossible for them to occur. There have been few during the tenure of Ian Gorst. Because of their secretive nature, when decisions are made out of the public eye, I think they are an abuse of the Parliamentary process, and are very much to the detriment of democratic accountability. They will remain a blight on local democracy, until they are severely restricted in use.

Guest Posting from Daniel Wimberley

I would advise people to think twice before voting for Andrew Lewis, on the basis of his track record as Minister for Home Affairs for the few brief months during which he suspended Graham Power.

Firstly, Napier found that “the basis on which he (Graham Power) was suspended on 12 November 2008 was in my view inadequate” (Napier report, paragraph 107). And the rest of that paragraph sets out the detail of how utterly inadequate the whole process was.

The Napier report shows that the main decision which Lewis took as Minister was just plain wrong.

Secondly I invite readers to read the following quotes from Lewis, said in the States on 2nd December 2008, when answering two separate questions following his making a statement to the States on suspending Graham Power

"As far as the accusation you raise about the Metropolitan Police, when I saw the preliminary report I was astounded. So much so that my actions, I believe, are fully justified. If the preliminary report is that damning, Lord knows what the main report will reveal. So my successor will have an interesting time. The report that I was shown gave me no doubt at all." (my emphasis)

And

“I have read an alarming report from the Metropolitan Police which led me to this decision in the first place.”  (my emphasis)

And then to compare the above, with what Napier says about this same report, namely the “interim report” from the Metropolitan Police:

"As previously has been noted, neither Mr Lewis nor Mr Ogley saw the Interim Report. Neither did they seek to see it. The reason given was the nature of the information that was contained therein. It was, said Mr Ogley, a police document and it was inappropriate that he (or anyone else) should have access to it. Mr Ogley says that he was told both by the Attorney General and Mr Warcup that he should not look at the interim report and neither he nor Mr Lewis did so."

Napier report paragraph 101

It appears from the Napier report, carefully compiled some months after the States in camera questions, by a leading QC engaged by the States, that it is hard to avoid the conclusion that Andrew Lewis lied to the States.

I invite readers to draw their own conclusions from the above and to think very carefully before voting for Andrew Lewis. In fact I am very surprised that he dares to consider putting his name forward for election to the States.

Maybe there is an innocent explanation for what I have written above – if so, I would like to hear it. I am quite happy to send the original texts in full to anyone asking for them.



2 comments:

Deputy Sam Mézec said...

Thank you for publishing this Tony.

I completely agree with the former Deputy.

He says he is astounded that Mr Lewis is putting himself up for election on this basis.

Here's my theory -

Ordinary Jersey voters in St Helier are primarily concerned about issues that directly affect them like cost of living, employment and improving the quality of life for town dwellers.

On all of those subjects Deputy Mike Higgins will have excellent policies and be able to articulate sensible and captivating ways to solving those issues.

The purpose of Andrew Lewis standing is to try and distract Deputy Higgins from making those arguments and instead focus his campaign on the suspension of Graham Power which, to most voters, is ancient history that they don't care about.

In short - it's an attempt to sabotage Deputy Higgins re-election campaign by dragging him away from a message that connects with voters.

Mike Higgins is one of the hardest working members of the States and a real thorn in the side of the Council of Ministers. The Council of Ministers clique (Ozouf, Bailhache, Gorst etc) hate St Helier because it is the place where people like Deputies Higgins and Southern get elected. That's why they support a continuation of gerrymandering in our electoral system.

If they can get rid of Higgins, it will be a godsend to them and make their jobs far easier to do without worrying about any meaningful scrutiny.

Throwing Lewis into St Helier 3/4 (he can't stand in St John because Tracey Vallois is going to win by a landslide, I predict) is a typical Establishment Party campaign tactic.

Mike Higgins is not a member of Reform Jersey, but we support all the hard work he does and virtually all of his policies. We are putting a candidate up in district 3/4 and hope that voters will use only two of their votes, one for Mike and the other for our candidate.

Jersey politics needs more people with integrity like Mike, and far fewer people like Lewis with a very questionable history serving the people of Jersey.

Sam

voiceforchildren said...

Tony.

Your readers might be interested to know, not withstanding the apparent dishonesty of the disgraced former Home Affairs Minister Andrew Lewis in telling the States he had read the MET Interim Report, then telling Napier (and Wiltshire) that he hadn't read it.

Andrew Lewis, then claims in the secret States sitting;

"As far as the accusation you raise about the Metropolitan Police, when I saw the preliminary report I was astounded. So much so that my actions, I believe, are fully justified. If the preliminary report is that damning, Lord knows what the main report will reveal."

Tony, I am sure you are aware of "Operation Tuma?" Your readers, or those with an interest in the facts behind the (illegal?) suspension of the former Police Chief Graham Power QPM and the contradictions of the disgraced former Home Affairs Minister would benefit from reading this little snippet from the MET police's Operation Tuma.

"Para. 4.36 "In the Heads of Complaint made by Mr Harper he states that the review criticised a number of areas of the investigation. The review does not criticise the investigation. The Review does not criticise any individual involved in Operation Rectangle."

So in conclusion Andrew Lewis has said he HAS read the MET Interim Report AND says he HASN'T.

He says it was full of criticisms concerning Operation Rectangle/Harper/Power yet the MET police say;

"The Review does not criticise any individual involved in Operation Rectangle."

On the face of it Mr. Lewis appears to be a very dishonest man and would agree with Daniel, don't vote for him.

Operation Tuma can be read HERE.