Let me start by saying the guidelines that govern the staffing of offices for Members of Parliament apply to everyone. It is therefore wild and hypocritical for the Honorable Member of Parliament for Siparia Mrs Kamla Persad Bissesser to campaign for the removal of Marlene Mc Donald based on evidence in the public domain and then try to defend herself for breaching the very same code.
Prime Minister Dr the Honorable Keith Rowley acted based on an informed, measured, fair and reasonable standpoint with the removal of Marlene Mc Donald in light of her breach of the parliamentary code. It must also be noted that these actions are in keeping with his commitments on the campaign trail.
Mrs Persad Bissesser came out on Saturday admitting that her niece is currently employed at her constituency office and has been there for 20 years. In a weak attempt to mount a defence she has said that the act was amended in September 2015.
It must be noted that according to the Parliamentary code Members of Parliament have the sole responsibility for choosing the persons employed at their constituency office.
As an Attorney SC and Parliamentary Legislator, Mrs Persad Bissesser has a responsibility to uphold and practice the law. This is further amplified, especially with a parliamentary code that she has collective responsibility for enacting.
It is therefore clear that Mrs Persad Bissesser has consciously neglected the Parliamentary code and the Integrity in public life act by continuing to employ a close relative to date at her office.
At a time when citizens and in particular our youth population look to our society for role models we cannot have the perception that the rules only apply to some.
Mrs Kamla Persad Bissesser, do the honorable thing and resign!
Peoples National Movement