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Thursday, 27 August 2015

Employee election voting rights

Q: Can my employer refuse to give me time off to vote?

A: Employers are required to give their employees two hours paid time off to vote.

According to section 36(2) of the Representation of People Act 1967, as amended
"Every employer shall on polling day allow every elector in his employ the prescribed period for voting and no employer shall make any deduction from the pay or other remuneration of any such elector or impose upon or exact from him any penalty by reason of his absence during that period"

Additionally, according to Rule 28 under the Election Rules deemed to be made under section 161 of the Act states:
“Every employer shall permit each elector in his employment to be absent from his work on polling day during the hours of the poll for two hours in addition to the normal midday meal hour.”

The penalty for non-compliance is enshrined in section 96 of the Act:
"An employer who fails to comply with any of the provisions on section 36 (2) and any person who directly or indirectly by intimidation, undue influence, or in any other way interferes with the granting to an elector or the prescribed period for voting referred to in that subsection is liable on summary conviction to fine of $30,000 or to imprisonment for 12 months."

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Trinidad and Tobago voting rights

Q: I came to Trinidad in 2002 and became a permanent resident for 7 years. I am a British citizen.  Can I vote? And my friend is a permanent resident from China, can he vote too? We all have ID cards for long. Awaiting your reply.

A: All adult Trinidad and Tobago citizens can vote. Additionally, Commonwealth citizens can vote if they are:
  • 18 years of age or older
  • Resided legally in Trinidad and Tobago for a period of at least one year, 
  • Resided in an electoral district/constituency for a least two months prior to the Qualifying Date.

A Non-Commonwealth citizen is not eligible to vote in parliamentary elections.

Saturday, 22 August 2015

Manifestos for Trinidad and Tobago general election 2015

With the Trinidad and Tobago 2015 general elections around the corner, the contesting parties have released their manifestos.
The political leaders: Kamla Persad-Bissessar (P.P. - middle)), Keith Rowley (P.N.M. - right) and Jack Warner (I.L.P. - left)

Current government - People's Partnership

1st Opposition - People's National Movement

2nd Opposition - Independent Liberal Party

Thursday, 13 August 2015

Trinidad & Tobago vehicle tint law

Q: Is 20% tint too dark/illegal to have on your car windows? 

A: There is no legal percentage in Trinidad and Tobago law. According to the Motor Vehicles and Road Traffic Act 1934, as amended:

23. (1) Save as provided in this section—
(d) no motor vehicle the windscreen or any other window of which is fitted with glass so tinted, treated or darkened as to obscure the view of the inside of the vehicle from the outside

The law is not clear. Visibility through tint is relative and can be determined by the time of day, the weather, etc.

Also, the Act does not give a police officer the authority to order a driver to remove tint from their vehicle. Police officers don't know this, so they will still give the instruction. If you are instructed to do so, refuse and accept the ticket... then contact me.

When a law lacks clarity or is based on personal perception, it is impossible to enforce.