UNC Senator resigns

United National Congress (UNC) senator Ashvani Mahabir has resigned.

The outgoing senator confirmed via text message that he tendered his resignation to the Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar today and she accepted it.

"The OL (Opposition Leader) has accepted my resignation. On official statement is expected soon. UNC PRO may assist," Mahabir said.

In a brief telephone interview, Persad-Bissessar also confirmed that she received and accepted Mahabir's resignation.

Chaguanas chamber joins chorus against FOIA amendments

The Chaguanas Chamber of Industry and Commerce (CCIC) has joined the voices of non-governmental organizations, other professional bodies and citizens, calling for the postponement of the passage of the proposed amendments to the Freedom of Information Act Chap 22:02.
The Chamber said in a statement Tuesday that there has been no consultation with stakeholders on the introduction of the proposed legislation in Parliament.

Young: Registration process not a doorway to citizenship

No T&T per­ma­nent res­i­den­cy or cit­i­zen­ship for Venezue­lan reg­is­tra­tion ap­pli­cants, says Na­tion­al Se­cu­ri­ty Min­is­ter Stu­art Young.

He was re­spond­ing to re­marks by the Venezue­lan Am­bas­sador Car­los Perez that reg­is­trants may have a chance for per­ma­nent res­i­dence or cit­i­zen­ship with the cur­rent reg­is­tra­tion dri­ve.

Young al­so re­spond­ed sim­i­lar­ly when queried on the mat­ter by the Op­po­si­tion in Par­lia­ment on Mon­day.

Kamla vows to challenge FOIA changes

Any at­tempt by the Gov­ern­ment to sti­fle the pub­lic's free­dom to in­for­ma­tion will be met with court ac­tion, Op­po­si­tion Leader Kam­la Per­sad-Bisses­sar warned on Mon­day night.

Al­though de­bate on the Mis­cel­la­neous Pro­vi­sions (Tax Amnesty, Pen­sions, Free­doms of In­for­ma­tion, Na­tion­al In­sur­ance, Cen­tral Bank and non-prof­it or­gan­i­sa­tions) Bill 2019 had been sched­uled for Par­lia­ment, Per­sad-Bisses­sar took time off to at­tend the Unit­ed Na­tion­al Con­gress' Mon­day Night Fo­rum at Na­pari­ma Col­lege in San Fer­nan­do.

Ramesh threatens public campaign to stop FOIA amendment

Contending that democracy is now under threat, former Attorney General Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj has threatened to mount a public campaign to stop the government from amending the Freedom of Information Act without public consultation.

During a press conference at his office in San Fernando, Maharaj said the proposed amendments were not in the public interest and will hinder people from accessing the Act to get government-held information.

Kamla on FOIA: Amendments obscene, no support from Opposition

A mass ap­peal by at least 30 pri­vate bod­ies, in­clud­ing the Law As­so­ci­a­tion of T&T (LATT) is try­ing to force the Gov­ern­ment to with­draw the Clause 7 amend­ment to the Free­dom of In­for­ma­tion Act (FOIA).

The LATT, in a me­dia re­lease yes­ter­day, said it sup­port­ed the call for pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion on the pro­posed amend­ments to the FOIA.

"The FOIA has be­come a cor­ner­stone in civ­il so­ci­ety’s ef­fort to hold pub­lic au­thor­i­ties to ac­count.