by Linda Straker
A law firm representing Nazim Burke, Political leader of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) wants Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell to retract defamatory statements he made about Burke on a popular television programme, and at the same time pay compensation for his “pain and suffering.”
A letter dated 30 January 2017 from Lex Fedelis Chambers claimed that Dr Mitchell had defamed its client, Nazim Burke, and seeks a retraction, apology, and financial compensation for the embarrassment, pain and suffering caused.
Lex Fedelis is the law firm to which Burke is associated. The letter was signed by Rohan Phillip, who served as Attorney-General during the Tillman Thomas NDC Administration. Phillip one of the other Associates in the law firm which was opened after the NDC lost the general elections in 2013.
Giving the Prime Minister until 10 February to respond to the demands, Phillip said that the allegation which was made during a weekly “Beyond the Headlines” aired on the Grenada Broadcasting Network (GBN) caused serious injury to Burke’s reputation.
According to the letter, the Prime Minister alleged, among other things, that Nazim Burke who served as Finance Minister during the period 2008 to 2013, evaded taxes and was owing Government money for unpaid taxes. Besides the apology, retraction and compensation, the letter also is requesting that Dr Mitchell undertake in writing that he will not repeat the allegations nor make similar allegations in the future.
In responding to inquiries about the letter, Press Secretary Kisha Alexander–Grant confirmed that the letter was in the hands of the Prime Minister’s lawyers, and said that Dr Mitchell would have made the statements “fully cognizant of the facts, and in time that will reveal itself… so Senator Burke, for his purposes, can go ahead and do what he needs to do, whatever he feels he needs to do, for whatever reason, political or otherwise, and the Prime Minister will know what he needs to do when that time comes. The facts will bear themselves out.”