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
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.”