By: Precious Mills
BASSETERRE, St.Kitts (Thursday, 14th December, 2017)– Junie ‘Scrape’ Hodge may or may not still currently hold the position as Superintendent of Prisons, according to the sentiments he expressed during an interview with this media house this week.
A call was a placed to him in an effort to find out- stemming from rumoured reports- whether or not he recently received a termination letter after his vacation period ended earlier this month.
In speaking with this reporter, Hodge confirmed that he did receive a letter but that “it’s not about termination” while adding “I can’t speak about it because my attorney is dealing with it.”
When asked if he is still the Superintendent of Prisons though, he expressed the uncertainty of such in pointing out “that, too, is full of ambiguity.”
Hodge then restated that the matter “is in my lawyer’s hand.”
Information gathered by this media house indicates that the letter he received was addressed from the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of National Security Osmond Petty whom he was supposed to have a meeting with on Tuesday 5th December.
Speaking to WINNFM, Hodge talked about the happenings which led up to him receiving the letter.
He disclosed that on the night of the 4th of December, he was rushed to the Pogson Hospital after he took ill having experienced an “excruciating pain” in his left side.
Hodge said he spent the night hospitalised “in pain.”
He also told that “the same time I was supposed to meet with him, I was rushed to the JNF Hospital where I was put on two bags of drips that I was aware of and went under a number of examinations.”
Hodge highlighted: “So they (hospital officials) released me that day. The following day I went to his (Petty) office and just let him know that ‘yes, I was in the hospital’ because it seem as though he didn’t want to believe that. (I) went for the letter that day, he say he ain’t have no time for no meeting now.”
He continued: “I had to go for another medical examination that day, that afternoon, he say ‘well whenever.’ It so happen that’s the day when my vacation would have expired… the 7th and I didn’t receive anything from them yet so I turned out to work on the 8th on time too and in uniform and while I (was) there, he called me on my cell phone and he tell me he thought we were to meet before and I must leave. Well I say I’m not going to leave unless I get the document from him so I’m coming by his office (indicating that) I need that instruction in writing so I went to the office and he gave me the document.”
That particular document is the letter he has been issued.
On 7th October this year, this reporter had also contacted Hodge about circulated rumours which claimed that he was no longer the Superintendent of Prisons.
When asked about it then, he commented “That’s not true.”
He was on vacation at that time.
Information widely circulated via social media had alleged back then that Hodge was pushed out of the post following an argument with a top official in the Ministry of National Security while another report claimed that he handed over the position to someone else (Mr. Asheila Connor).
Although on vacation, Hodge had cooperatively given an update in regard to the investigation that was being carried out at the Her Majesty’s Prison (HMP) on Cayon Street following two incidents which took place the week before.
Allegedly, that matter stemmed from a jail fight involving prisoners.
Hodge had informed that police were dealing with what happened there whilst pointing out “but the reason why it started, we are still trying to get to the bottom of it.”
When asked about a media contact while he was out on vacation, this media house learnt that the fill in official was Assistant Superintendent of Prisons Asheila Connor.
Hodge was appointed as Superintendent of Prisons in February 2016.