By Kenton X. Chance
The mother of embattled former model, Yugge Farrell, who has claimed that she was in a relationship with Minister of Finance Camillo Gonsalves that ended in 2016, says she met last year with Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves, Camillo’s father, and discussed the alleged relationship.
“It might look to people like is the first time but I [have] been to De Comrade already. Me and he reason out and he told me bring the witness that Camillo used to go by and take my kid for having night club and all them kind of thing,” Gailene Farrell told iWitness News on Tuesday, one day after her daughter was sent back to the psychiatric hospital for a third consecutive week.
(Scroll for our complete video interview with Gailene Farrell)
On Monday, Senior Magistrate Rickie Burnet sent Yugge, 22, back to the Mental Health Centre as he decides on legal arguments presented by Director of Public Prosecutions Colin Williams and defence counsel Grant Connell about a medical report that says the accused woman is not fit to plea to an abusive language charge.
On Jan. 5, when she appeared before Bertie Pompey at the Kingstown Magistrate Court, Farrell pleaded not guilty to a charge that on the previous day in Kingstown, she used abusive language, to wit, “you dirty b***h” at Camillo’s wife, Karen Duncan-Gonsalves, a senior crown counsel.
Pompey granted an application by the prosecution to send Farrell to the Mental Health Centre for two weeks of observation.
The Crown presented no arguments or information to support its application, but the magistrate granted it, amidst strong protest by defence counsel Grant Connell.
One day after her court-ordered hospitalisation, some videos were posted on social media in which Yugge made a number of allegations, including that she had a sexual relationship with Camillo, which ended in 2016.
The medical report presented to the court on Monday says that Yugge is unfit for trial.
The DPP has asked the court to order that Farrell remain at the psychiatric hospital for further treatment, and Connell asked that she be released on bail.
Magistrate Burnett is slated to give his ruling on Monday, Jan. 29.
Meetings with the PM
Gailene told iWitness News on Tuesday that she and the Prime Minister met at his office last year.
“We spoke about Yugge when she wasn’t feeling — I see something in the newspaper. I went to the CID and report it and then the Monday I go to De Comrade and me and he reason and he told me go for the witness, go for the lady who see Camillo used to take Yugge and go. I went for her and we reason out. He said he would bring a doctor name Dr. Belle to help me with Yugge because he told me that people with these kind of brain, you can’t leave them,” Gailene told iWitness News.
She said that she told the prime minister that she understood that her daughter was in a relationship with his son, Camillo, 44.
“I carry the paper for him. Me and him bin done reason since last year,” Gailene said, adding that she carried to see the prime minister the lady who reportedly knew about the alleged relationship.
“And De Comrade, me and the lady, we were speaking. The lady even give him a paper with a name on it, a number and everything.”
Gailene said that after a meeting with the prime minister, she told Yugge that she had gone to see the head of government.
“She said, ‘For true?’ She laughed. She feel pleased.”
Gailene said she and Yugge went to the Office of the prime minister subsequently.
“And he ignored us. You understand? He ignored us. And when she (Yugge) coming down, she said, ‘Remember, tell him is Jahdatta.’”
Farrell has appeared in videos on the internet referring to herself as Jahdatta.
During Monday’s court appearance, it was revealed that Farrell had been hospitalised at the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital for about three days last February, during which she was treated for dehydration and given anti-psychotic medication.
Gailene said that she knew about her daughter’s hospitalisation, but when asked if she knew her daughter was treated for a mental health condition, she said:
“Well, I don’t think that was a mental health condition. I think the doctor tell me she was dehydrated, something like that.
She identified the physician as “Dr. Providence”.
The mother told iWitness News that she understands that it was the police who had taken her daughter to the hospital.
Gailene told iWitness News that Dr. Providence, who she said is their cousin, told her that Yugge was not co-operating with the police and they wanted to take her to the Mental Health Centre and she (Dr. Providence) had told them no, because they are related.
Gailene said that Yugge was living with her at the time of her hospitalisation.
Asked if her daughter was behaving in any way that “you, as a lay person, would think that she is crazy or she has a mental problem”, Gailene said, “No, Yugge ain’t been behaving so. Yugge been good all the time.
“Yugge used to visit Dr. Providence all the time and normally, she been good.”
She said Yugge visited Dr. Providence for medical reasons but said she did not know what condition her daughter had why she had to visit the doctor.
Alleged relationship with Camillo
The mother also spoke to iWitness News about the alleged relationship that her daughter had with Camillo.
She said that one day she heard Yugge speaking and her daughter said she was speaking with Camillo.
Gailene told iWitness News that before that, Yugge used to be hanging out in Bottom Town, but stopped after the alleged relationship with Camillo began.
“Yo’ know, like yo’ dey on the street, somebody like yo’ in a high position, we will say, well, we are poor black people, you understand? So come like maybe Yugge go feel good now, like, ah talking to the prime minister’s son and she come back home. Maybe to show him some respect.”
The mother said Yugge used to be in Rose Place with some girls called “the parliament girls”, the mother said, describing “the parliament girls” as “a group”, members of which normally go to Camillo to the night club.
Farrell said that during the time of the alleged relationship, which reportedly began sometime in 2013, she did not see her daughter for some years.
“During the time, I miss her for couple years. Going in three years and some months I ain’t seeing my kid at all.”
She said that she did not know where Yugge was and did not try to find her.
“After I get to understand she with Camillo I never went no further,” the woman said, adding that she had gotten the impression that Camillo and Yugge were together.
She said that her daughter did not specifically tell her that she was in a relationship with Camillo.
“But from my experience, I say, ‘Yugge, yo’ talking to Camillo? Bring him home nah.’ She never bring him.”
In the Vincentian vernacular, “bring home”, in this context, refers to a person taking a significant other to their parents’ home to introduce them to each other.
This is often done when a person is in a serious relationship or courtship with a view to marriage with that person.
Farrell told iWitness News that she never knew that Camillo — who has a 7-year-old — was married until her daughter’s arrest.
She, however, said that she got the impression from Yugge that she and Camillo lived together.
“Because she even said that Camillo has a daughter and would like her to teacher the daughter,” the mother told iWitness News.
Gailene, however, said that she has never met or had a conversation with Camillo.
The ‘missing’ years
She said that the three years when Yugge was away from her house began in 2013.
“Because ‘14, ’15, and ’16, she wasn’t around me. She didn’t sleeping around me. She was with Camillo.”
She told iWitness News she also understood from Yugge’s father that Camillo and Yugge were living together in a house.
Gailene said “a witness lady named Clem” gave Yugge’s father that information.
When iWitness News visited the Farrell’s home community of Lowmans Bay on Jan. 8, residents there told us that Farrell’s father had boasted repeatedly that Camillo was his son-in-law.
Gailene told iWitness News on Tuesday that she has heard Yugge’s father say this.
“Well, yeah, is he son-in-law, because she dey (in a relationship) with him.”
Gailene said she was convinced that Yugge was in a relationship with Camillo.
“And I did accept it,” she said adding that she has known Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves for a very long time.
Yugge a private person
On Jan. 7, two days after Yugge was arraigned, her father, Calvert Charles, told iWitness News that Yugge does not discuss her personal life with him.
“She is a kind of lady, she does tell you she grown up. She don’t communicate much with nobody in the home.”
Asked if he was concerned that she might have a mental health issue, he said there were time when he found that she “was moving a kinda (kind of) way, but for the past months, I find she was acting a little more normal to me.”
The father said that while Yugge was modelling, he did not see her for about three years, “because she did live in she own place.
“She did rent a property. I didn’t know who paying for it, I didn’t know how she stand in all them times. I just see like she get down and she came back home,” he said, adding that Yugge has her own room at his house in Lowmans Bay.
The father said that when Yugge was living on her own, he did not visit her, but she would call him and arrange to meet with him at different places in Kingstown.
“One or two time, might be every six months or like when she used to go away to Barbados and them place, sometimes she go and do shows and things, when she come back she mighta (might have) call me and me and she mighta meet up in town and we might discuss about the show and different things.”
The father said that Yugge never took him to where she was living, adding that only her youngest brother had gone there and had spent a night when she had participated in a show.
He said that when she returned home, no one tried to question her about what had happened.
The father said he was concerned about his daughter.
“Is I who work to get money and send them school, mek sure they grow up to be good people,” Charles said.
He said he was not on social media but Yugge’s brother would tell him about what was being said there.
“It is a serious thing tekking place within the nature of the life,” the father said.
Asked what he meant by that, he said: “Well, the kind of things I hearing and different comments I hear people mekking, I just could listen.”
The father said he knew of his daughter’s arrest when she called him from the Mental Health Centre, saying that she had asked for a telephone call to contact him.
In the interview on Tuesday, Gailene told iWitness News that she and Prime Minister Gonsalves have has known each other “for a very long time.
“We know for a very long time. I didn’t even … have a kid when I know the prime minister.
“If I use to get in any little thing with the law, he used to stand up for me, so I just always keep more closer and those kinds of things,” said Farrell, who has served time in jail for causing the death of her son a number of years ago.
Farrell and Yugge’s father, Calvert Charles, also of Lowmans Bay, are currently facing charges of attempted murder and arson.
The Crown has alleged that on Nov. 1, 2017, Charles and Farrell set afire a timber house owned and occupied by Edward Durrant, 53, of Lowmans Bay.
It is reported that on November 1st 2017, the duo set on fire a wall and timber dwelling house, valued at 10 thousand dollars, and owned by 53 year old Edward Durrant of the same address and inflicted cutlass wounds on him as he tried to escape.
The accused have each been granted EC$30,000 bail with one surety and were ordered to surrender all travel documents to the court, to report to the Questelles Police Station on Mondays between the hours of 6 a.m.and 6 p.m. and not to leave the state without the permission of the court.
A preliminary inquiry into the indictable charges is slated to commence on Feb. 6 at the Serious Offences Court in Kingstown.
She said the situation with Yugge really touched her heart.