Graham Power’s letter, Part 2

This as full a list as I can put together of Terry’s “misleading statements” about Graham Power’s letter saying that he was willing to take part in the Napier review. Remember that what Mr. Power, our former Chief of Police said, was:

““For the avoidance of any doubt whatsoever, it is my firm wish to assist Mr Napier with his review provided that I am able to do so with a clear understanding of my position.”

Here goes:

Hansard Oral Questions: 19th October, 2010

2.9     The Deputy of St. Martin of the Chief Minister regarding the Terms of Reference relating to the former Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police’s sworn affidavit:

Will the Chief Minister inform Members why part (d) of the Terms of Reference relating to the former Police Chief’s sworn affidavit and published in the comments to P.9/2010 and in the Jersey Evening Post on 26th March 2010 was removed from the Napier Report, and who was responsible and, given the affidavit’s relevance to the suspension, why Members were not party to the decision to amend the terms?

Senator T.A. Le Sueur (The Chief Minister):

The original terms of reference were drafted at the time when it was not known whether the previous Chief Officer of Police would participate in the review.  As such, paragraph (d) deals in certain terms of reference as this sworn affidavit was a significant document available in the public domain that put across his version of events.  When it was established that the previous Chief Officer of Police would fully participate in the investigation, (my emphasis) Mr. Napier felt that he would be able to obtain all of the necessary information from the Chief Officer through formal interview.  Prior to the detailed investigation commencing, Mr. Napier discussed the relevance of the paragraph with the Deputy Chief Executive, who was overseeing the investigation on my behalf, and they agreed it was no longer required since the copy of the full affidavit was provided to Mr. Napier as part of his original briefing.  Mr. Napier makes 3 references to the affidavit in his report, and I am totally satisfied that any relevant detail contained in the affidavit was fully considered by Mr. Napier in compiling his final report.

Hansard Oral Questions: 30th November, 2010

2.9     Deputy F.J. Hill of St. Martin of the Chief Minister regarding the alteration of the Napier terms of reference:

It is a case of third time lucky; maybe this time.  Given that the explanations given as to why and when the Napier terms of reference were altered to refer to decisions taken after R.39/2010 was presented to the States, will the Chief Minister inform Members when this was done and who was party to the decision and explain why he and the Deputy of St. Martin were not party to those discussions?

Senator T.A. Le Sueur (The Chief Minister):

In answer to the Deputy’s questions in October and November of this year, I referred to the changes that were made to the terms of reference and to the confirmation received from the former Chief of Police that he would fully participate in the investigation.  I do not recall making any reference to decisions being taken after R.39 was presented to the States.  The former Chief of Police confirmed to the Deputy Chief Executive in a letter dated 31st March 2010 that he would fully participate in the investigation, that date being well before R.39 was presented to the States.  Because there was agreement between Mr. Power and Mr. Napier concerning participation that would enable Mr. Napier to gain full access to information, there was no need to involve either myself or the Deputy of St. Martin.

2.9.1  The Deputy of St. Martin:

From the answers given I cannot understand the logic of removing part (d).  Surely if the former Police Chief was going to assist with the review then part (d) should have remained as part of the terms of reference so those people mentioned in the Chief Officer’s affidavit could all have been interviewed.  Does the Chief Minister agree?

Senator T.A. Le Sueur:

Yes, Mr. Napier had access to all the information he required and had it not been the case then I agree with the Deputy that the part (d) could have been left in there.  But as there was the categorical assurance from the former Chief Officer of Police, it was no longer necessary.

(my emphasis throughout)     NOTE that Graham Power’s apparent willingness to take part “fully” in the review, is essential for Terry to then say: ‘there was no need for part d) of the Terms of Reference as Napier and Power were going to talk with each other. Trouble is, Power had been told that part d) was still in, whilst in fact it had been removed. It is interesting that Terry feels the need to up the stakes and “improve” on the “confirmation” of Mr. Power and turn it into a “categorical assurance” !

Hansard Written Questions: 18th January 2011

4.10 THE DEPUTY OF ST. MARTIN OF THE CHIEF MINISTER REGARDING CHANGES TO THE TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR THE NAPIER REPORT:

Question

With reference to the removal of part (d) from the Napier Terms of Reference will the Chief Minister inform Members –

(a)     why this was considered necessary when the former Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police had agreed to partake in the Review and, if he had not participated, would part (d) have been removed?

  • (b)     …………
  • (c)     ………….
  • (d)     …………
  • (e)     ………….
  • (f)      ……………

Answer

(a)     During a discussion with Mr Napier at the time he commenced his review, the TOR were discussed and the relevance of paragraph (d), given that Mr Power had confirmed that he would fully participate in the review.  Mr Napier’s view on this particular clause is re-produced below and has already been provided to the Deputy of St Martin in a previous e-mail exchange.

            “I too remember our conversation.  But I am afraid I don’t have a note of the date.  It didn’t, to be honest, seem an important point at the time.  My recollection is that it seemed unnecessary to go into the affidavit since it had become clear that Mr Power was willing to talk to me.”   (my emphasis)

          Had Mr Power chosen not to participate, part (d) would not have been reviewed. The very reason this paragraph was put in at the outset (P9.COM) was to enable the Reviewer (at that time not known) to have access to Mr Power’s version of events should he not wish to participate. Given that Mr Power or, one of his supporters chose to place the Affidavit in the public domain, it seemed reasonable that the Reviewer should have access to this document.

Hansard Oral Questions: 1st February 2011   2x

Terry Le Sueur “……………..    In the answer I provided to the Deputy of St. Martin on 18th January 2011, in answer to part (c) and part (d), of his question I advised that Mr. Napier had confirmed that when the removal of paragraph (d) of the terms of reference were discussed it did not seem important as it would not be necessary to rely only on the affidavit since it had become clear that Mr. Power was willing to talk to him.” (my emphasis)

Hansard Written Questions: 29th March 2011

1.8     THE DEPUTY OF ST. MARTIN OF THE CHIEF MINISTER REGARDING THE NAPIER TERMS OF REFERENCE:

Question

On 29th March 2010 the Deputy Chief Executive wrote to the former Police Chief Officer inviting him to participate in the Review of the Suspension process for the Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police and included part (d) of the Terms of Reference, which was before it was later removed.  Will the Chief Minister inform Members whether the Chief Police Officer was ever informed that part (d) had been removed, and if not why not?

Answer

The previous Chief Officer of Police was not informed that part (d) had been removed as the Chief Officer agreed to fully participate in the review being undertaken by Mr. Napier.  (my emphasis)

 

Hansard Written Questions: Tuesday 17th May, 2011

2.7     THE DEPUTY OF ST. MARY OF THE CHIEF MINISTER REGARDING THE CO-OPERATION OF THE FORMER CHIEF OFFICER OF THE STATES OF JERSEY POLICE WITH THE NAPIER INQUIRY:

Question

When the former Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police wrote to the Deputy Chief Executive on 31st March 2010 saying that he would cooperate with the Napier inquiry into his suspension, were there any qualifications or provisos made by him in that letter as to his willingness to co-operate with the inquiry?

Answer

The former Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police wrote to the Deputy Chief Executive on 31st March 2010 saying that he would wish to assist Mr. Napier subject to clarification on aspects of the confidentiality and evidence obtained by Mr. Napier. The Deputy Chief Executive clarified these issues in writing on 16th April 2010 along with other practical matters regarding records, professional advice and accompaniment.  Subsequently, the former Chief Officer did indeed co-operate with Mr. Napier in the inquiry.

(my emphasis throughout)

Hansard Oral Questions: Tuesday 5th July, 2011

5.14   The Deputy of St. Mary of the Chief Minister regarding the Napier Review.

Can the Chief Minister explain why he maintains that the former Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police offered in his letter to the Deputy Chief Executive dated 31st March 2010 to fully participate in the Napier review?

(NOTE: I ask the question because in the written answer of 17th May quoted just above, Terry has at last admitted that there were caveats on his “willingness” to take part in the Napier review. Will he now admit the same out loud on the floor of the Assembly?) 

Senator T.A. Le Sueur (The Chief Minister):

The letter of 31st March 2010 received from the former Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police clearly states that the Chief Officer wished to participate fully in the review subject to 2 issues on which he requested clarification.  The letter states: “For the avoidance of any doubt whatsoever, it is my firm wish to assist Mr. Napier with his review, provided that I am able to do so with a clear understanding of my position and the evidential status of any information covered by Mr. Napier while I am still subject to disciplinary notices.”  The 2 issues that are outstanding were relatively straightforward to address and on that basis, I was and I remain of the view that the former Chief of Police was willing to participate in the Napier review.  [Approbation]

5.14.1         The Deputy of St. Mary:

Yes, the Chief Minister has now at last clearly said orally as well as in answer to the written question of mine on 17th May, that there were qualifications to the statement of the former Chief Officer of Police that he was willing to participate in the inquiry.  It was covered in provisos and caveats: “… provided that, in particular, the following 2 issues remain to be resolved.”  So what I want to know from the Chief Minister is how he can square that fact, that the Chief Officer of Police said that he would fully participate “provided that”, with his statement, among many, but the particular statement on 30th November 2010, where he said in his first answer to an oral question – so it was a prepared answer: “The former Chief of Police confirmed to the Deputy Chief Executive in a letter dated 31st March 2010 [which is what we have just been talking about] that he would fully participate in the investigation.”  Can he explain his use of those words?

Senator T.A. Le Sueur:

Yes.  The words quoted are the words I quoted this morning: “For the avoidance of doubt, it is my firm wish to assist Mr. Napier with his review provided I am able to do so …”  The Deputy seems merely to be questioning whether I made it clear that there were caveats.  I may not have made it clear in November that there were caveats because those caveats had been addressed, as the result of which, in my view, and it is my view, the former Chief Officer was indeed prepared and willing and anxious to assist.


5.14.2         The Deputy of St. Martin:

Would the Chief Minister agree that had the former Chief of Police been made aware that the terms of reference had been altered following the initial letter from the Deputy Chief Executive that the former Chief of Police would not have taken part in the inquiry?

Senator T.A. Le Sueur:

I do not believe that is the case but I cannot know what is in the former Chief of Police’s mind.

5.14.3         The Deputy of St. Martin:

What happened was that part (d) was removed therefore there was a change in the terms of reference to which the Chief of Police was never made aware of.  Would the Minister not agree that had he been made aware of the change to the terms of reference he may well not have taken part in the review?

Senator T.A. Le Sueur:

That is a hypothetical question but, in my view, the omission of that term of reference made no difference whatsoever when it was quite clear that the inquiry would still receive from the former Chief Officer of Police the statement referred to by the Deputy earlier.

5.14.4         The Deputy of St. Mary:

The Chief Minister has now told the House that his words: “The former Chief of Police confirmed in a letter dated 31st March 2010 that he would fully participate in the investigation.”  He has confirmed to the House that there were severe caveats to that willingness on behalf of Graham Power and yet he did not make those caveats clear to the House, even though they are there in black and white in the letter, as part of a prepared question.  Can the Chief Minister comment on what that does for trust and transparency in this House and with the public?

Senator T.A. Le Sueur:

I think the Deputy is implying that the caveats, in his words, were severe.  In my words they were relatively straightforward issues; it is a matter of opinion.  (my emphasis)

It took nearly 9 months for Terry Le Sueur to state openly that “the letter of 31st March 2010 received from [Graham Power] …….. clearly states that [he]  wished to participate fully in the review subject to 2 issues on which he requested clarification.”   In other words Power was NOT willing to participate until certain matters had been cleared up.

Mr. Power himself has written, in a statement about this matter: ” My view of the above letter is that it makes it clear that any participation in the Napier review is conditional on outstanding issues being resolved to the satisfaction of myself and my professional advisors.   I can think of no other reasonable interpretation.   In particular I cannot see how it can be taken as giving an undertaking that I will participate in the review.   Moreover, I note from subsequent correspondence that my interpretation of what my letter of 31st March 2010 is saying appears to have been shared at the time by the Chief Ministers Department.   .” (For full statement see here.)

So, the Chief Minister’s Department (meaning John Richardson, who was corresponding with Power and seeing Napier) ) knew that the letter was qualified. They knew all along.

And yet Terry le Sueur was giving answers for 7 months which claimed that Mr. Power had “confirmed to the Deputy Chief Executive in a letter dated 31st March 2010 that he would fully participate in the investigation”

Yep, you may find this tedious, or just a tad hard going, but

a) this has massive implications for the way Jersey is governed – straight or bent? clean or dirty? and

b) this is what you pay us for.

Terry misled the House, and he did it because behind these “lies” or “misleading statements” – whichever you prefer – is the issue of explaining away the “disappearance” of one of the Terms of Reference of the Napier review – the one which would have led to questions to Bill Ogley, Andrew Lewis, and so on. Oooops, can’t go there. Close it down. It is about whether or not there was / is a little clique at the heart of government that protects its own interests above the public’s interests.

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