Cletus St. Paul, the former Chief Bodyguard to executed Marxist Prime Minister Maurice bishop and current National Security Advisor to Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell has apologised to Radio station owner, George Grant over statements he made accusing him of committing a criminal offense.
St. Paul, an executive member of the ruling New National Party (NNP) administration, had accused Grant of defrauding customs over the importation of telecommunication equipment.
The top security advisor was captured making the allegations in a conversation held with talk show host Kem Jones earlier this year over the Chester Simon container debacle.
St. Paul alleged that no duties were paid on equipment brought into the country by Grant for his radio station.
The conversation took place while St. Paul was present at a public meeting of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), at Birchgrove, St. Andrew’s.
The contents made its way onto YouTube and were laced with raw obscene language.
St. Paul alleged that last year Simon brought in a container that had radio equipment for Grant Communications and was able to evade customs of the duties.
“All George Grant equipment last year came through Chester … it passed free … George Grant whole f… communications passed through customs without f… duties being paid, “ St. Paul told Jones.
Grant is the operator of Chime FM Radio.
Grant dismissed St. Paul’s allegations through a statement that was published on Grenada Broadcast.com as being a figment of his (St. Paul) imagination.
The Radio Broadcaster said the allegations were not only inaccurate, but also libelous.
He said he received concessions for the equipment from the Government of Grenada through Cabinet, and that St. Paul’s allegation is malicious.
Grant revealed that in January 2013 the shipment of the equipment arrived and was “graciously processed and cleared by Customs without any hassle.”
“The allegations that equipment for my radio station arrived here in a container from Mr. Simon and that I paid no duties on equipment last year are nothing short of figments of Mr. St. Paul’s imagination, or deliberately contorted with malicious intent, “he said.
Grant had his Attorney write to St. Paul asking for a simple apology, and after an extended period of time before it was adhered to, St. Paul submitted both a written and oral response to the Radio Operator last week Tuesday.
As a public service The New Today newspaper reproduces the full text of St. Paul’s apology to Grant:
“I, Cletus St. Paul of Tempe, St. George’s, wish to extend an apology to Mr. George Grant for comments made in the course of what I thought was a private conversation some weeks ago.
As the comment was made privately, I assure all that no harm was ever intended to Mr. Grant’s reputation.
Unfortunately, I cannot withdraw the comments because I was not the one to record and circulate the said recording on the public media such as Youtube and other outlets. I reiterate that the statement was made in a private and spirited conversation with an Official of the NDC (National Democratic Congress) and were not meant for the ears of other persons.
Further, the statements expressed were purely my private views at the time, and not those of the (New National) Party or Government with which I am associated. In fact, the strictly private conversation was taped unknown with me by individuals who, obviously, intended to use what I said for malicious purposes to attempt to embarrass not only me, but my professional and personal associates.
I will note, however, that while my private conversation was not directed towards Mr. Grant nor intended to harm his reputation, at the time I made the statement I believed them to be true. However, subsequent information coming to my attention has indicated otherwise.
I am now satisfied that the statement regarding Mr. George Grant being involved in any process concerning the importation of goods without paying duties or deliberately avoiding the payment of duties are completely untrue.
In any event, had I been conscious of the fact that my private conversation was being taped and intended to be published to third parties as was eventually done, I would never have spoken in those terms. I deeply regret any harm done to Mr. George Grant and hereby unreservedly apologise to him for any injury to his reputation arising from the same.
I also hereby agree and undertake never to repeat those statements again.”