Wheatley can proceed with administrative orders
THE EDITOR, Madam:
This is a statement on behalf of Dr Andrew Wheatley. The Supreme Court will not hinder Dr Wheatley’s application for the declarations he is seeking but says that the member of Parliament does not need its permission to proceed. Further, no order for cost was made against Dr Wheatley. “It is not sufficient for the director of investigation to conclude that there were no instances of nepotism or impropriety and leave it buried in the report,” Dr Wheatley asserts.
“In accordance with the law, the investigator had a duty to go further and recommend to the commission that he be publicly exonerated of culpability. The mere fact that the court did not make any order as to the cost, they did not want to deter the litigant in pursuing an appeal,” he added.
Justice George denied the application for leave to compel the director of investigation to recommend his exoneration to the commission while indicating that he was free to pursue the other declarations that were sought in the Supreme Court.
We are awaiting the written judgement, after which a determination will be made by his client as to whether he wishes to pursue an appeal.
Wheatley had applied to the court for judicial review of the Integrity Commission’s Special Report. In particular, he is challenging the lawfulness and fairness of the conclusions in the report.
The following administrative orders are being sought:
- A declaration that the adverse finding and recommendations and criticisms made of the applicant in the report were invalid to the extent that they were founded on invalid findings of fact;
- A declaration that where a commission calls a person’s reputation into question in a direct way, any criticism that is made must be made upon a proper legal basis;
- A declaration that where the commission makes a finding, in the exercise of an investigative jurisdiction, the commission must base its decision upon evidence that has some probative value;
- A declaration that the applicant has a legitimate expectation that the respondent would have conducted the investigation in a manner that achieves transparency, accountability, and fairness.
Dr Wheatley and his attorneys welcome the ruling and will be pursuing the declarations post-haste.