The Opposition chief executive officer William Framhein has resigned over the controversial statement he posted on the Democratic Party’s Facebook page about a fortnight ago.
In a statement released last night, the Opposition Democratic Party leader Tina Browne said she accepted his letter of resignation which was tendered on Monday.
When contacted yesterday, Framhein said he would not comment further on the matter.
In the statement, Tina Browne said, Framhein’s formal resignation has avoided possible escalation of a “very unfortunate issue” and she is pleased it has been resolved by the former chief executive officer himself.
Calls made to Browne last night to clarify the “very unfortunate issue”, remained unanswered.
Last week Browne had confirmed the Opposition Caucus had held confidential discussions to address the future of her chief of staff, after he had admitted making a controversial Facebook post then lied to police to cover up.
During that meeting, options were discussed including the termination of Framhein’s employment and extended suspension without pay.
“The options discussed were not limited to two,” Browne said last week. She declined to speak further on the issue.
Framhein found himself in hot water after initially categorically denying inappropriately posting on Facebook at the funeral service of Mona Ioane Junior, about the speech made by young Mona’s father and the allegations against Minister George (Maggie) Angene.
Framhein acknowledged he was one of the page’s adminstrators, but denied to police, his family and Cook Islands News that he was responsible.
The post sparked public outrage on the social media forum and the party removed the post almost immediately.
Browne was forced to issue a statement apologising to the Ioane family and to Angene.
Last week, in a statement to Cook Islands News, Framhein admitted he was the post’s author.
In the statement, Framhein unreservedly apologised to the Democratic Party and said out of necessity he was compelled to deny making the post on the party’s Facebook page.
“This is because my life was threatened and my family was also threatened,” he said.
Minister George Angene, who earlier called Democratic Party to sack the post’s author, last week said he was disappointed and hurt at the discovery that Framhein was the author.
When later asked whether Framhein should be sacked for posting the allegations, Angene said “that is a decision for his (Framhein’s) leader and the Democratic Party caucus to make, not me…”
- Additional reporting from Katrina Tanirau