Photo: Dr. Geoffrey Hanley

By: Spokesman Newsroom

BASSETERRRE, St.Kitts (Friday 23rd November 2018)-Accused by timescaribbeanonline.com in a recent article of mismanagement of the former PEP (People Employment Programme), the opposition St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP) fresh candidate for Constituency One (East Basseterre) Dr. Geoffrey wants the court to clear his name of defamation and criminal libel levelled against him by that media outlet said to be “the political mouthpiece of the Dr. Timothy Harris-led administration.”

Dr. Hanley’s team is of the view that his “detractors” are caught up in a “smear” campaign.

A written statement issued earlier this week (Sunday 18th November) from his political office, highlighted the intention of addressing the matter.

“The Office of Dr. Geoffrey Hanley, the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party candidate for East Basseterre, wishes to bring to the attention of the law-abiding public that Dr. Hanley has retained counsel to pursue legal action against timescaribbeanonline.com and its shady actors for defamation and criminal libel through an article published on its website on November 15, 2018.”

It continued: “In Dr. Hanley’s view, the article promulgates an innuendo of wrongdoing on his part in relation to the PEP programme. Dr. Hanley categorically and forthrightly denies any wrongdoing whatsoever over the 28 years of his public service career and calls upon timescaribbeanonline.com, the political mouthpiece of the Dr. Timothy Harris-led administration, to remove the referenced offending article from its website and to refrain from publishing any such false or misleading information about him or his tenure in the public service.”

The statement also pinpointed that Dr. Hanley’s detractors are engaging in smear campaigns against him and that he is not daunted by the disinformation.

“Dr. Hanley was always mindful that as a result of the strong, organic political support which his candidacy is receiving from the constituents of East Basseterre, which includes Taylor’s, New Pond’s Site, Pond’s Estate, Pond’s Extension, Newtown, Pond’s Pasture, Bird Rock, Frigate Bay and the South East Peninsula, his detractors would seek to engage in smear campaigns against him as their only hope of thwarting the legitimate will of the people of East Basseterre.”

“Dr. Hanley is not daunted by his opponent’s campaign of disinformation but is instead committed to a campaign of positive engagement with the people he intends to serve in Parliament. Dr. Hanley cares about the bread and butter issues that the people of East Basseterre are faced with. He is eager to tackle the increasing prevalence of crime, and the dire need for housing, educational opportunities, and employment. He is focused on meeting young and middle-aged men and women who need assistance in getting their businesses up and running, and off the rocks. Dr. Hanley intends to take on these crippling concerns of the people of East Basseterre and ensure respectful, honourable and uplifting representation by the next representative of East Basseterre,” the release further stated.

Dr. Hanley was the immediate past PEP manager before the change of the SKNLP administration to the now Team Unity government following the February 2015 General Elections. PEP has been changed to STEP (Skills Training Empowerment Program) under the new government.

Dr. Hanley is expected to run against government minister Ian ‘Patches’ Liburd of the People’s Action Movement (PAM) in the next General Elections.

Notably, timescaribbeanonline.com, which has a popular presence of social media network Facebook of over 61,000 followers, is not publicly known to be owned by any particular individual or group. However, over the years fingers have pointed at a well-known local resident in light of controversial party political content over the years.

The business info section on Facebook informs that the page was created in March 2013, and visitors are generally encouraged to: “Get our headlines on WHATSAPP: 1) Save +1 (869) 665-9125 to your contact list. 2) Send a WhatsApp message to that number so we can add you 3) Send your news, photos/videos to [email protected]