When Kamla made Anand Ramlogan a Senator and swore him in as Attorney General, I asked my friends in the legal fraternity, he bright? He capable? You see, I didn't know anything about Ramlogan beyond his column in the Guardian. I knew that he had positioned himself as a champion of the people in that column, but what the column really did was advocate against the oppression of Indians. Ramlogan, then, wrote many interesting and pointed articles about how marginalised Indians were under the PNM. His views had merit, but the balance in his analysis left much to be desired. However, in the legal sphere I had never heard his name be called regularly and for high profile cases. In short, I was very unaware of how skilled an AG he had the potential, if any, to be. So I waited. I gave this government almost 8 months to show their colours before I began criticising them. In that 8-month period Ramlogan promised that he was going to bring charges against Manning and Calder Hart and make them accountable for the mismanagement that happened at UDECOTT. Then he began his hunt. The most memorable thing about Ramlogan's tenure in that first 8 months was his inability to recognise Grand Pianos. From that moment the AG began to take on the image of the buffoon. I immediately started seeing him as a Naipaul hero. Foolish, uncomfortable in his own skin, but doggedly persistent.
Between then and now Ramlogan has done little to distinguish himself in the legal fraternity beyond award himself silk, and deliver so many pre-action protocol letters to Opposition and Media Houses that the AGs Office seems like a CEPEP for Lawyers. In between those activities he was busy defending the State of Emergency, spent several nights on television acting the fool, got put in his place by Dominic Kallipersad, supported and repeated John Sandy's comment that all murders were being perpetrated by young black men from single parent homes and yeah...firing the legal team that had been very successful in the Ish and steve Extradition Case. If you beginning to notice that Calder Hart and Manning fell off his radar, don't be worried. He eventually took out a law suit against Calder Hart in his private capacity because he really doesn't have any evidence to link Hart to corruption, just evidence that Hart mismanaged a state agency. And given Ramlogan's tenure in office, mismanagement of office is par for the course with the politicians and state board members we getting these days.
Under this AG and Government the image of the legal fraternity taking steady blows. Lawyers appear corrupt, unethical, inefficient and downright foolish. But don't say that to their faces. They get upset and accuse you of lashing out and being stupid. It may be that too many lawyers are currently benefitting from the free for all troughing that this Government is allowing. We have two CoE's running until 2013 and several legal firms stand to benefit from them. we are looking at millions of dollars in legal fees for open and shut cases.
It seems under this AG that litigation is being used punitively. If a story is published in the newspaper that paints the government in a bad light, faster than you can type a by line the AG has issued a pre-action protocol letter. Get up in Parliament and ask a reasonable question like "Why did you fire the very successful prosecution team that was working on the Ish and Steve case?" and yes...you guessed it....pre-action protocol letter.
But of late it is rumoured that the AG is linked to a sexual assault case of a prominent Senior Govt Official. And last week in Parliament he decided to sue the THA for undertaking a BOLT project....an act that was clearly done to terrorise the THA for the upcoming elections in that organisation and to paint Orville London (THA Chief Secretary) and Anselm London (Secretary of Finance) as corrupt mismanagers of funding. Only to have said legal action blow up in his face when it was revealed that Timothy Hamel-Smith gave THA the greenlight on the project. The AG's profound response on the matter was, "Duhhhhh, I didn't know".
This man is abusing the power of his office. You telling me Ramlogan couldnt have asked a few questions before lashing out at the THA...but then again...the whole point of his tirade was to put the THA on the offensive and attack them...attack people's reputation and undermine Tobagonians....all for political mileage.
In all of this I haven't yet mentioned Section 34.....you know why? That's the big one....the mark on that aint even start to buss yet. And I feel when it start to buss so, people will cyah take it.
De Vice Cyah Done!