The much awaited report from a team of lawyers contacted by Senator Nyonblee Karngar-Lawrence, in her capacity as Chairperson of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) to ascertain whether the framework document of the CPP was altered or not as was alleged against Alexander Benedict Cummings, political leader of the Alternative National Congress (ANC) by Benoni Urey has been released and has vindicated Mr. Cummings for any wrong doing.
In a communication addressed to Senator Lawrence, then leader of the CPP, dated October 14, 2021 and signed by Cllr. Benedict F. Sannoh, for and on behalf of the team of lawyers, the lawyers came up with four findings that informed the outcome of their response.
In the report a copy of which is in the possession of the Analyst Newspaper, addressed the major issues raised by the complaint Urey and came up with the conclusion that there was nothing to support the claim by the ALP political leader that Cummings indeed should be liable for the charges against him.
Point #3 in the lawyers’ report clearly buried the assertion that Cummings altered or made changes to the document unknowingly to the other political leaders within the CPP as it was stated that the lawyers were the ones that did same with the knowledge of the CPP leaders.
“Upon review of the said document, we made a number of revisions both in substance and structure and the framework document as revised was presented at the meeting convened for that purpose and attended by the leadership of the four political parties”.
The report also added some supporting background to authenticate how they got in the picture to do a job that all the four political parties have requested to do.
“We were invited by the CPP as a team of lawyers and requested to review the framework document as concluded by the four political parties (ALP, ANC, LP and UP).
“We were informed that the framework reflected the will of the parties to form a collaboration, but wanted to ensure that the framework complies with full legal prescription both in terms of substance and structure.
“Upon submission to the leadership of the parties and to date, we have had no interaction with said document”, the letter said.
Senator Lawrence had earlier written the lawyers on October 12, 2021 seeking for their inputs some issues surrounding the allegation among which were to know that the procedure that was followed in incorporating the proposed amendments in the framework document and submitting same to the National Election Commission, the effect of abstracting the signature page from the original framework document signed on May 19, 2020 by the four political leaders and attaching same to the final document without their approval, express or implied and submitting same to NEC and any other issue of legal significance that needs to be addressed.
Cllr Sannoh told Senator Lawrence that the lawyers voluntarily agreed to support a process as part of their patriotic commitment to the country, knowingly that their contribution will assist in reconciling and engendering an environment for better collaboration and coordination but noted with concern however that the issues raised in her letter upon which they were asked to give opinion have become the subject of intense internal and external discussions over the past weeks. He warned of the dire consequences if the leaders of the CPP do not take action to checkmate the situation.
“Notwithstanding, May we remind you that there are risks associated with the unceasing public engagement on this matter. Accordingly, we advise that some form of collective restraint is put in place and that the political leaders exert effort to bring closure to this matter”, he warned.
With the matter being closed from the perspective of the lawyers’ report, it is not still clear what action or decision the CPP leadership will take with respect to making Cummings to be satisfied having gone through a lot of heat with the grave allegation against him or what will become of Urey who made the allegation that has turned out to be false.