Colonial Secretaries were appointed under recommendation by the British Parliament, with the formal requirements of the assent of the Crown. Colonial Secretaries were one position under the top job of Governor. The Bahamas had several Colonial Secretaries who filled the position of Acting Governor when necessary.
Colonial Secretary, Kenneth Wamsley had a spotless career in the Bahamas, up until 1962. Between the end of the tenure of Lord Ranfurly (1956) and the beginning of Sir Arthur Raynor’s April 1957), tenure as Governor of the Bahamas, Kenneth Walmsley, as the top colonial representative, was appointed Acting Governor.
In September 1958, Colonial Secretary, the Honourable Kenneth Walmsley, was Acting Governor when Sir Raynor was off the island.
Walmsley is pictured here presenting a medal to Thomas Robinson for his lone participation in the Commonwealth Games on 1958.
(The Miami News, Tuesday 23rd. September 1958)
By 1962, Kenneth Walmsley’s career was on a downward spiral. He found himself on trial for the sexual assault of his Jamaican maid and her friend. Wamsley (48) was accused of sexually assaulting Jamaican Ivy Monica Nicholas (21) and her friend Avenel Sewell (24).
Kendal Isaacs prosecuted for the Crown and Eugene Dupuch represented the accused, Kenneth Walmsley.
MINISTER IN BAHAMAS ACCUSED
The defence counsel alleged in Nassau, Bahamas yesterday that a Jamaican servant girl was attempting to “frame” the Colonial Secretary of the Bahamas, Mr. Kenneth Maurice Walmsley with charges of indecent assault.
Mr. Eugene Dupuch asked the girl, Ivy Monica Nicholas (21): “Did you do it in the hope you would be bought off —- in the hope he (Walmsley) would pay your dressmaking course and your passage to England?”
Miss Nicholas said in cross-examination that she wished to take a course and visit her sister in England. She denied that she had tried to frame the colonial secretary. During cross-examination, she agreed that she had lost an illegitimate child.
WIFE IN ENGLAND
Walmsley (48) is accused of indecently assaulting Miss Nicholas three times. He is also charged with assaulting and indecently assaulting Miss Avenel Sewell (24) a friend of Miss Nicholas, in two incidents. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
His wife spent all day in court. The solicitor general, Mr Kendall Isaacs, prosecuting, said that the assaulted place while Mrs Walmsley was in England. On the first occasion, Walmsley held onto Miss Sewell “in a familiar way”.
On another occasion, he was alleged to have entered the maid’s quarters at about 11 p.m. and to have indecently assaulted Miss Sewell.
(Coventry Evening Telegraph Tuesday 11 December 1962)
Defence Argues It’s All A Diabolical Plot
Walmsley’s defence lawyer, Eugene Dupuch, argued that the two Jamaican women had concocted a devious plot against the Colonial Secretary. Dupuch even used the word “ingenious”.
It was argued by the defence that Walmsley was only an innocent victim, who had never taken advantage of the maid when his wife was away in England or laid a hand on her friend in the middle of the night.
The case against the former Acting Governor and Colonial Secretary of the Bahamas, collapsed by Friday 21 December, when the judge dismissed the case.
Dismissing the charges, Mr. Charles Barnwell, the magistrate, said: “As regards the complainants Nicholas and Sewell, who were the chief prosecution witnesses and on whose evidence the whole case turns, I find myself far from satisfied on the weight of the evidence as a whole that these two witnesses were telling the truth.”
Miss Sewell had alleged in her evidence that Walmsley played scrabble with her and Miss Nicholas —– with the loser to sleep with him. She said that she lost, but did not sleep with Walmsley.
Walmsley told the Court: “I am positive this is a complete frame-up to destroy me.”
His counsel, Mr Eugene Dupuch said that Walmsley had been “the victim of an ingenious and diabolical plot.”
Despite the evidence given by both women, and the strong case put forward by Prosecutor Kendal Isaacs, the defence strategy of an ingenious extortion plot against the Colonial Secretary prevailed in the end.
(The Morning Tribune Saturday 22nd December 1962)
Afterward, Kenneth Maurice Walmsley resumed his duties as Colonial Secretary as if nothing had ever happened. The fate of the maid and her friend are unknown.