Thursday, 9 December 2010

The Appropriate authorities.

Could the Education Minister please tell us, just who “the appropriate authorities” are?

In this posting I have set out to explore who they could be because he (the Education Minister) hasn’t told us. One would expect them to be the Attorney General, the Police, the Minister himself, and/or the States Employment Board when dealing with the subject of a Senior Civil Servant being named in connection with a Child Abuse trial.

On June the 3rd 2009 the then Attorney General, and now Deputy Balliff, William Bailhache released a Press Statement after deciding not to prosecute some alleged Child Abusers. The Press Statement was published by channelonline and can be read HERE
I reproduce a paragraph from that Press Release, where it says this.


A decision not to bring criminal proceedings doesn't, he says, “mean that those who have made complaints are not believed, nor does it necessarily mean that any account given by a suspect has been believed, A decision not to prosecute means only that the Attorney General, having fully considered all of the available evidence and other information, has decided that an acquittal is more likely than a conviction.”

The above paragraph basically explains that a suspect has not been proved innocent. The suspect could quite well be guilty but proving it in court is a different matter.

It is however legitimate to focus on whether there is any conduct or any matters relating to a suspect which, although not meeting the standards for criminal prosecution, cast doubt regarding their suitability to hold the position he/she might be in. Criminal charges have to be proven "beyond reasonable doubt" disciplinary issues have to be proven "on the balance of probabilities" which is a lesser test. In any event it is possible for action to fall short of being a "crime" but still be misconduct.

The other question is one of “confidence” in our Education Minister, a Senior Civil Servant and the department. How is it that a Police Chief can be suspended without due regard to due process on disputed allegations of a managerial nature, and a Civil Servant in the Education Department can be a suspect in a Child Abuse Investigation and remain in post? It just doesn’t stack up, it doesn’t make sense.

It is paramount that the public have confidence in public administration and parents must have the right to know, that any allegations involving Child Abuse, have been dealt with thoroughly, with no stone left un-turned. So far this doesn't look to have been the case. The Minister for Education Sport and Culture has been deafeningly silent after a Senior Civil Servant from his Department has been named in open court, by witnesses under oath, in connection with Child Abuse. Furthermore the Senior Civil Servant has been named in the "accredited" media, but still the Minister remained silent up until Deputy Shona Pitman asked him this question in the States.


“Following the naming of a senior Civil Servant from the Education, Sport and Culture Department in court by alleged victims within the current historic abuse proceedings, will the Minister give members and parents assurances that the matter has been fully investigated by his department?”. The audio of which can be listened to on TJW.

In answer(s) to that question, the Education Minister said things like “all States employees come under the remit of the State’s Employment Board” (S.E.B.). He also repeatedly said “all allegation had been thoroughly investigated by THE APPROPRIATE AUTHORITIES” So we could be led into believing that the decision "not" to suspend this Senior Civil Servant was taken by the S.E.B.

The Education Minister goes on to say “the S.E.B. are the body that oversees all issues to do with staff”. So again it looks/sounds like the S.E.B. are wholly, or partly, responsible for any investigation concerning the Senior Civil Servant at the Education Department.

Deputy Shona Pitman then asks why the Civil Servant was not suspended and the Education Minister replies “I cannot answer for the States Employment Board”. (S.E.B.)

So from all those answers we can be forgiven for believing that the S.E.B. have investigated and concluded there was no need to suspend the Senior Civil Servant and he appears to be innocent of any wrong-doing. (Although that’s not how the former Attorney General explains it).

OK then, let’s buy into that scenario.


One of the S.E.B. members is none other than Bill Ogley, the Chief Executive Officer to the Council Of Ministers, who it is widely believed, as a result of the Napier Report, was disciplined by the Chief Minister for his handling of the possibly illegal suspension of our most Senior Police Officer Graham Power QPM.

Why is that significant?

Well as we know the former Police Chief submitted a sworn affidavit. And in that affidavit he swears this.


"The third example I have chosen relates to a Strategic Planning Workshop held at the St Pauls Centre on Friday 24th October 2008. The Workshop was attended by a number of senior public servants including myself and the Chief Executive. At the commencement of the workshop the Chief Executive asked for silence and said that he had an announcement to make. He named a senior civil servant who was present. The person named is a suspect in the abuse investigation but has not been suspended. The Chief Executive said that the suspect had his total support and that “if anyone wants to get…….(the suspect)…….they would have to get me first”. This announcement was applauded by some but not all of the persons present. I took it as a further indication of the “in crowd” closing ranks against the “threat” of the abuse enquiry. The Chief Executive later played a significant role in my suspension.”

So if we are to assume that the Civil Servant named in the sworn affidavit is the same Civil Servant at the Education Department, and we accept that the former Police Chief did not commit perjury by knowingly giving false testimony in his affidavit, then it would appear that the CEO, Bill Ogley (of the State’s Employment Board) has said “the suspect had his total support and that “if anyone wants to get…….(the suspect)…….they would have to get me first”.

But this is all, of course, if we buy into the scenario, as we have been led to believe by the Education Minister, that this all has nothing to do with him and it’s all down to the S.E.B. Them being “The Appropriate Authorities”.

Right at the end of this question period, in the States, another member of the S.E.B. (I think it was Deputy Debbie de Sousa) stood up and said “The S.E.B. do not make judgments as to whether somebody is suspended or not”. So was the Education Minister being economical with the truth?

Who are “The Appropriate Authorities?” if it is the Police, and subsequently the Attorney General, then the suspect has not been proved innocent. If it was the States Employment Board then was Bill Ogley involved in any part of it? And if so doesn’t the Education Minister see any kind of a perceived conflict of interest there?

Far from instilling confidence in the Minister, the Senior Civil Servant and the Education Department, I’m sure the public, and in particular, parents of children in the Education Department, will be filled with terror and fear………………….I know I am.

We want "assurances" Deputy Reed, we want the truth, we should have the right to know that our children are safe and we still don't know who are the appropriate authorities?

Submitted by VFC.

8 comments:

  1. What exactly could the States Employment Board investigate?

    Would they have access to any current police complaint or investigation?

    I assume they do check if a civil servant has a police record.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I believe the States Employment Board were presented with, in 2008, a “notice of disclosure” by the SOJ Police which, as far as I’m aware notified them that this Civil Servant was being investigated for Child Abuse.

    It’s still very confusing as to who should have acted on this, whether it was the then Minister for E.S.C. Senator Mike Vibert who went on to be spectacularly defeated in the 2008 Senatorial Election and subsequently lost his seat. Or was it the SEB? That should have acted on it? But what I do know is that, according to the former Chief Police Officer’s affidavit, Bill Ogley said “if anyone wants to get…….(the suspect)…….they would have to get me first”.

    Graham Power was subsequently suspended and the alleged suspect didn’t face any charges and remains in post to this day. That’s what’s known as “The Jersey way".

    ReplyDelete
  3. "A decision not to bring criminal proceedings doesn't, he says, “mean that those who have made complaints are not believed, nor does it necessarily mean that any account given by a suspect has been believed, A decision not to prosecute means only that the Attorney General, having fully considered all of the available evidence and other information, has decided that an acquittal is more likely than a conviction.”


    The reason for not prosecuting this civil servant is a simple one. How would it look on the states of jersey if two alleged child abusers were able to rise through the ranks to the very top posts and not be detected as child abusers. These are the cases that had to be kept away from the court at all costs.

    Has he got away with it? only time will tell. The wizard is in Australia. In keeping with the total Farce of what's going on over here has just written a guest posting on a blog, a perfect match some might say.

    Keep on exposing these criminals

    There is now momentum and times are changing

    ReplyDelete
  4. Attorney-General William Bailhache

    THE senior Education Department civil servant investigated by the police as part of the historical child abuse inquiry will not be prosecuted, the Attorney General has decided.

    It is believed that this decision was made after the file was examined by independent advocates and a Queen’s Counsel in the UK.

    A decision not to prosecute has also been made about a former member of the Education department who was also investigated as part of the inquiry. It is believed that the Attorney General, William Bailhache, informed the States Police of the decision about six weeks ago.

    After being asked this week to confirm that the two men were no longer being investigated, the Law Officers’ Department issued the following statement: ‘As the Attorney General informed the States in July 2009, it is not the practice of the Law Officers’ department to comment on individual decisions not to prosecute. It is not appropriate to make any further comment.’

    Article posted on 16th October, 2009 - 2.57pm, This is Jersey

    ReplyDelete
  5. "examined by independent advocates"
    wouldn't be from a certain bedford row now would they!!

    ReplyDelete
  6. It is okay for the Attorney General to state that 'A decision not to prosecute means only that the Attorney General, having fully considered all of the available evidence and other information, has decided that an acquittal is more likely than a conviction.' But as long as legal advice remains secret and not open to scrutiny, why one particular conviction is not pursued is anyones guess. The Crown Officers may say that it is because the court is more likely to acquit that convict, but it could also be that in some cases there is quite sufficient evidence to secure a conviction, but that it is 'inconvenient' for political reasons to do so. One reason might be that it would give bad publicity to Jersey and therefore scare off business from coming here - and we know how scared the Powers are of doing that.

    I am not saying this is the case here, but as long as the legal advice of the AG concerning legal advice remains beyond scrutiny, there will always be the perception that 'something is rotten in the States of Jersey'

    ReplyDelete
  7. This alleged bully has to answer those allegations. His position is weakened daily by these allegations and surely his time is coming to an end. No-one can weather this kind of bad publicity. When the SoJ realise they cannot buy all of the vitims' silence, they will realise that this man will have to stand in court and face those allegations finally

    ReplyDelete
  8. He will face a court and be tried for his alleged crimes I assure you.

    ReplyDelete

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