First Look

Statement by ECJ Commissioners Julian Robinson and Wensworth Skeffery



Electoral Commission | 2018-05-24 10:50:00


Given recent commentary in the public domain about the resignation of the former Director of Elections, Orrette Fisher, we feel compelled to make the following statement.
On Sunday, May 13, 2018, the Electoral Commission of Jamaica issued a statement which inter alia specified that there was no evidence of political interference in the operations of the EOJ. Both of us as Commissioners participated in the meeting where the statement was drafted and agreed with its contents, as there was a media report which referenced political interference at the EOJ.
Subsequent to that statement, we have now received copies of the resignation letter of Mr. Fisher dated March 12, 2018 and two other letters from Mr. Fisher written to the Chairman of the ECJ, dated November 3, 2015 and May 2, 2016. We only received Mr. Fisher’s resignation letter on May 16, 2018, three days after the publication of the ECJ statement and the other two letters on May 18, 2018, when the letters were released to the media.
Having now reviewed the resignation letter and two other letters written by Mr. Fisher, we are withdrawing our support for the statement issued by the ECJ on May 13, 2018 and will be calling for an urgent investigation into the issues raised by Mr. Fisher.
We are deeply concerned that these issues raised by Mr. Fisher could affect the integrity of the operations of the ECJ and public confidence in the institution.
Since joining the Commission (Robinson – July 2017 and Skeffery – January 2018) we have seen and witnessed firsthand behaviour from a Commissioner that we view as disrespectful, abusive and hostile to the former Director, Mr. Fisher as well as to other members of the ECJ including independent members.
On these occasions where we have seen this behavior, we have both challenged the Commissioner in question and sought the intervention of the chairman and other independent members to restore decorum.
These developments are unprecedented within the ECJ and decisive steps must be taken to resolve these matters.
It is incumbent on the independent Commissioners to be the protectors of the integrity and balance in the ECJ and they should assert their leadership to ensure that the ECJ continues to enjoy public confidence and trust.
Julian Robinson and Wensworth Skeffery.




Posted By :DAYNIA HARPER

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