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Former JDF head 'justifies' keeping Ellington in the dark on planned mortars use

Published:Saturday | June 18, 2016 | 6:42 PM
Former head of the Jamaica Defence Force Major General Stewart Saunders says the decision on whether to make a disclosure about a sensitive aspect of an operation is not guided by courtesy, friendship or good relations, but by the need to know principle.

Former head of the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) Major General Stewart Saunders has acknowledged that it could appear discourteous and surprising that he did not inform retired Police Commissioner Owen Ellington of the planned use of mortars during the operations.

The admission by Saunders came in his response to the adverse findings made against him by the Sir David Simmons-led commission.

The three-member commission described it as astonishing that Ellington was never informed of the planned use of explosives during the operations that were aimed at capturing drug lord Christopher Dudus Coke.

However, in his response, which was also included in the report, the retired army chief defended his decision saying he was under no duty to make the disclosure to the then police commissioner.

He says the decision on whether to make a disclosure about a sensitive aspect of an operation is not guided by courtesy, friendship or good relations, but by the need to know principle.