Vaz vows to defend himself as dad taught him

BY KIMONE FRANCIS
Senior staff reporter
francisk@jamaicaobserver.com

Monday, November 11, 2019

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THOUGH mourning the death of his father Douglas Vaz, minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation Daryl Vaz has vowed to hold those believed to be involved in a campaign to smear his name accountable.

Vaz, who spoke briefly at a Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) Area Council One meeting at Mona High School in St Andrew yesterday, following the passing of his father earlier, said he would not let those allegedly involved off the hook.

“He (Douglas) has given me the strength today to come here and stand up in an Area Council One meeting with the courage and the conviction, and every time that they have gone after me he has always been there.

“I want to give an assurance to you today, today is not the day to talk the politics because I'm in mourning, and by extension the entire [Jamaica] Labour Party is in mourning, but tomorrow is another day and you can rest assured that I am going to take them on, on behalf of what my father told me, which is to stand up for your rights at all times,” said Vaz, the Member of Parliament for Portland Western.

He thanked JLP supporters for the outpouring of support before leaving the meeting.

Lawyers representing Vaz have threatened legal action against People's National Party's (PNP) Director of Communications Colin Campbell over comments in a hate mail that has gone viral on social media.

The anonymous message makes several allegations surrounding the recent decision by the United States (US) to revoke the visa it had issued to Vaz.

A similar post, with equally damaging allegations, has also gone viral surrounding PNP Vice-President Phillip Paulwell, whose visa was also recently revoked by the US.

While there is speculation about who authored the posts, attorney-at-law George Soutar has written to Campbell charging that he forwarded to a WhatsApp group dubbed 2019 PNP MPs and Caretakers, the mail which “makes defamatory, false, scurrilous and vicious allegations about my client [Vaz]”.

Soutar further charged that Vaz has evidence to show that Campbell, “published the defamatory matter to in excess of 60 recipients, and it has since been widely distributed on social media”.

Campbell, who has confirmed that he has received the letter from the attorneys representing Vaz, said he does not know anything about the hate mail and neither did he originate it.


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