Deportes

More comments received for Tobago self-government bill

That day al­so Charles on TTT said all the par­ties in To­ba­go had met and fi­nal amend­ments had been re­ceived and were be­ing ti­died up to sub­mit by that day’s dead­line

Gail Alexan­der

Sev­er­al more com­ments were re­ceived on the To­ba­go self-gov­ern­ment bills at Thurs­day’s dead­line for sub­mis­sions, said Plan­ning Min­is­ter Camille Robin­son-Reg­is.

Robin­son-Reg­is is the leader of Gov­ern­ment’s Busi­ness in the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives. She’d al­so chaired the Joint Se­lect Com­mit­tee that ex­am­ines the two bills – the Con­sti­tu­tion Amend­ment (To­ba­go Self Gov­ern­ment) bill and the To­ba­go Is­land Coun­cil bill which fa­cil­i­tates mech­a­nisms for self-gov­er­nance.

The JSC’s re­port on the bills was de­bat­ed in Par­lia­ment two weeks ago. The Op­po­si­tion UNC which want­ed more con­sul­ta­tion on the bills walked out dur­ing de­bate fol­low­ing a dis­agree­ment with the Gov­ern­ment over the Prime Min­is­ter’s speak­ing time.

The gov­ern­ment took the bills to the fi­nal lev­el – dis­cus­sion be­fore the Par­lia­ment’s com­mit­tee stage. That in­volves MPs from both sides. It was agreed to al­low for fur­ther com­ments on the bills un­til Ju­ly 15.

When the UNC re­turned to Par­lia­ment be­fore the an­nu­al re­cess, the Gov­ern­ment and Op­po­si­tion agreed the bills would be car­ried in­to the sec­ond ses­sion of Par­lia­ment fol­low­ing the re­cess.

That starts in Au­gust. It’s ex­pect­ed all com­ments will then be dis­cussed at Par­lia­ment’s com­mit­tee stage in­volv­ing all MPs.

On Thurs­day Robin­son-Reg­is said about four com­ments were re­ceived in­clud­ing orig­i­nal com­ments from PDP’s Far­ley Au­gus­tine and Plat­form for Truth/One Voice leader Ho­choy Charles. She was await­ing the lat­est com­ments which both were ex­pect­ed to sub­mit.

That day al­so Charles on TTT said all the par­ties in To­ba­go had met and fi­nal amend­ments had been re­ceived and were be­ing ti­died up to sub­mit by that day’s dead­line.

He said, “We feel we must spec­i­fy the mat­ters we’re go­ing to be re­spon­si­ble for in To­ba­go in the Con­sti­tu­tion­al changes.”

Charles said there was no in­ten­tion to break up or di­vide T&T’s union but rather strength­en it “in case some­thing goes wrong with Trinidad we can op­er­ate on our day to day ba­sis…we al­so want to en­sure we can do things – fix lights, wa­ter, roads, land is­sues – with­out any­one from T&T im­pos­ing de­ci­sions.”