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General => General Discussion => Topic started by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 02:13:36 PM

Title: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 02:13:36 PM
This issue is the most important issue in recent years that could affect the future of T&T as democracy and will not go away now that the bill has been insanely passed by our lower and upper houses without the consent of the majority of T&T citizens who care about our future as a democracy.

With that in mind please post the latest news and discussions on this important issue affecting our future as proud free Trinbagonians to this thread.

ILP files constitutional motion: ‘Citizens’ rights breached’ (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/ILP-files-constitutional-motion-Citizens-rights-breached-273270601.html)
By Kejan Haynes Multimedia Reporter (T&T Express)
Story Created:    Aug 29, 2014 at 10:33 PM ECT


The Independent Liberal Party (ILP) is now the first group to take the Government to court over the controversial Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014. The bill was passed in the Senate on Thursday night after three days of debate.

“At around two this afternoon (yesterday), we would have filed a constitutional motion, a fixed-date claim form accompanied by two affidavits, in which we sought certain relief from the courts,” said ILP deputy political leader Rekha Ramjit. She is also lead attorney for this matter.

The ILP argued the amendments to the Constitution brought by the bill are in contravention of certain fundamental rights and freedoms of the people.

The ILP is asking the court to declare the provisions of Section 8 of the Constitution (Amendment) Bill which seek to amend Section 73 (the System of Balloting) of the Constitution are likely to abrogate the provisions of Sections 4 and 5 of the Constitution, which deal with the recognition, declaration and protection of rights and freedoms of citizens.

Ramjit said Section 8 of the bill breaches the fundamental right of citizens as an elector and also the right of citizens who wish to be a candidate in the general election.

It will be served on the Attorney General.

The ILP is citing Sections 13.1 and Section 54 of the Constitution, which say any law which infringes on the fundamental rights of citizens must be done with reasonable justification and passed by a three-fifths majority of all 41 members of the House.

Ramjit is also arguing the Constitution (Amendment) Bill contravenes the right of freedom of political association and political expression.

They say the vote on election day is the ultimate form of political expression and with a candidate being eliminated in one round takes away that right.

“The right to vote is a fundamental right and the interference with that is what we’re saying,” Ramjit said.

They’re also arguing the new bill contravenes Section 73 of the Constitution which deals with the way MPs are elected. With the new provisions agreed to in the committee stage of the Senate, if two candidates are in the run-off one person must have more than 50 per cent of the vote to enter the House of Representatives. But if there were three candidates in the run-off, a candidate doesn’t need that 50 per cent.

“[It] is inequality of treatment of the candidates in one general election who are both citizens of Trinidad and Tobago. And who have met all the requirements,” Ramjit said.

“It’s the first elections you have to vote, and then get the results with a calculator,” ILP Chairman Jack Warner interjected.”

Meanwhile, ILP Political Leader Lyndira Oudit is calling on President Anthony Carmona to refrain from assenting to the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014 when it reaches his desk.

Before the bill becomes law, it first has to go back to the Lower House and then to the President to be assented to.

Oudit said the President has the power under Section 51 of the Constitution to decline. However, she said even though there is no precedent for this happening, the highest precedent in the land is the law itself. She sought to remind President Carmona he once told the public he has powers people may not even know he has.

“We are officially calling on the President to look at what is taking place,” Oudit said. “And we have to take it to the executive, but are prepared to write to the President insomuch as asking for him to not assent to this.”
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 02:21:23 PM
watch how yuh thread will get merge soon by the mods  :D
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 02:27:44 PM
watch how yuh thread will get merge soon by the mods  :D

There is no thread specifically on this topic so I don't see why this thread should be merged into any other.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 02:32:29 PM
ok Socapro ah hear yuh, let me add to yuh thread.

Quote
Vieira on reform bill: Most controversial law in T&T history

Debate went into a third consecutive day yesterday as senators used the maximum allotted time—one hour—to speak in favour or against it. Vieira said he had to pray about what he was going to say in the debate as his vote would be based on his conscience and would not be in favour or against any political party.

“But what is also without doubt is that whichever way I vote, somebody is not going to be happy about it,” he said. Vieira said he wondered whether that was the point in which the seeds were sown “for lines of division are deepened,” or will it be the time when the nation will rise above the many differences.

He said while the proposals were simple, “they did not lend themselves to knee-jerk reaction,” as “the devil is in the details.” In agreeing that only a simple majority was needed for the bill to be approved, Vieira said there was a significant difference between what the letter of the law allowed and what the spirit of the law requires.

For the law to be legitimate, Vieira said, there should be overall support for it. According to Vieira, the legislation forced citizens to consider whether the runoff measure was intended to favour the PP Government in the next general election or whether it would positively or negatively influence the electoral system.

http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2014-08-29/vieira-reform-bill-most-controversial-law-tt-history


Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 02:36:01 PM
Simply put ...

The individual made promises on her Election trail .

She won the election...

She is keeping her promises .

She has the votes in Parliament to make changes . If one hates any laws passed get her
replaced at the next election and repeal these laws ..see how simple it can be.

Only the citizens who are allowed to vote can make changes to these amendments
in their electoral district as stated  ,it will get the electorate involved , democracy  ...I fail to see why the hissy fit .

Why scare the electorate ..lets see democracy in progress before we join any group
of hissy fitters .

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 02:36:25 PM
a lot of people say it go backfire not just James

Quote

Bill will backfire on Govt—James


Noting that if no candidate received the 50 per cent majority vote in the runoff, the candidate with the highest percentage of votes will be declared the eventual winner, James said: “That would be electing a minority winner, which was the exact situation the legislation was intended to change. It will takes us back to square one. “This is pointless legislation because it cannot guarantee that a candidate will be elected MP with 50 per cent of the votes cast in a constituency.”

James said the Government did not consult with the population on the measure as it was seeking its own agenda. “It was merely seeking to keep an election promise without consulting the population. It will backfire on the Government,” he insisted, saying the swing voters who determine the winner of elections will vote against the Government at the appropriate time. James said what the voters in the country also would like to know is “how does this legislation help the country or improve democracy.”


http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2014-08-30/bill-will-backfire-govt—james (http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2014-08-30/bill-will-backfire-govt—james)

Title: Bill will backfire on Govt—James
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 02:45:03 PM
Bill will backfire on Govt—James (http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2014-08-30/bill-will-backfire-govt%E2%80%94james)
By Richard Lord (T&T Guardian)
Published: Saturday, August 30, 2014


Political analyst Dr Winsford James says the runoff legislation which was approved in the Senate on Thursday is pointless and will backfire on the People’s Partnership Government. The bill was passed in the Upper House on Thursday night after the Government agreed to an amendment on the controversial runoff vote made by Independent Senator Dhanayshar Mahabir.

The bill had initially proposed to trigger a runoff between the top two candidates if the winning candidate in a general election did not gain at least 50 per cent of the votes.

But the amendment proposed to allow a third candidate in the runoff, where that candidate secures 25 per cent of the vote or where the third candidate obtains votes amounting to five per cent less than the second runner-up. But in the runoff featuring the three candidates, the Government agreed that the winner can receive less than 50 per cent of the votes cast.

Speaking with the T&T Guardian yesterday, James said the new legislation would in fact make it harder for the winning candidate to secure a majority vote and would also not guarantee an election victory for the incumbent government.

Noting that the legislation was amended to allow for three candidates to contest the runoff, which would take place 15 days after the original poll, James said it would be easier for one of two candidates to get the 50 per cent vote in a runoff than it is for one of three candidates. He said the amendment will make it more difficult for any one candidate to secure the required 50 per cent or more votes.

Noting that if no candidate received the 50 per cent majority vote in the runoff, the candidate with the highest percentage of votes will be declared the eventual winner, James said: “That would be electing a minority winner, which was the exact situation the legislation was intended to change. It will takes us back to square one. “This is pointless legislation because it cannot guarantee that a candidate will be elected MP with 50 per cent of the votes cast in a constituency.”

James said the Government did not consult with the population on the measure as it was seeking its own agenda. “It was merely seeking to keep an election promise without consulting the population. It will backfire on the Government,” he insisted, saying the swing voters who determine the winner of elections will vote against the Government at the appropriate time. James said what the voters in the country also would like to know is “how does this legislation help the country or improve democracy.”
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 02:45:11 PM
Simply put ...

The individual made promises on her Election trail .

She won the election...

She is keeping her promises .

She has the votes in Parliament to make changes . If one hates any laws passed get her
replaced at the next election and repeal these laws ..see how simple it can be.

Only the citizens who are allowed to vote can make changes to these amendments
in their electoral district as stated  ,it will get the electorate involved , democracy  ...I fail to see why the hissy fit .

Why scare the electorate ..lets see democracy in progress before we join any group
of hissy fitters .


Simply put.. you are wong.  This Reform Bill in its entirety was not an election promise because the run off was not an election proposal and not in the PP manifesto.

We must be careful not to promote propaganda
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 02:59:13 PM
Simply put ...

The individual made promises on her Election trail .

She won the election...

She is keeping her promises .

She has the votes in Parliament to make changes . If one hates any laws passed get her
replaced at the next election and repeal these laws ..see how simple it can be.

Only the citizens who are allowed to vote can make changes to these amendments
in their electoral district as stated  ,it will get the electorate involved , democracy  ...I fail to see why the hissy fit .

Why scare the electorate ..lets see democracy in progress before we join any group
of hissy fitters .



Simply put.. you are wong.  This Reform Bill in its entirety was not an election promise because the run off was not an election proposal and not in the PP manifesto.

We must be careful not to promote propaganda


Spot on.

Also why try to change the election system that you used to get fairly elected unless you feel doing so is to your advantage to help you stay in power. In other words try to stay in power by any means necessary and sell it to the public as trying to increase democracy when you are doing exactly the opposite.

As we speak the UNC has also been flooding the marginal constituencies with Guyanese who have been living in the country who are unfairly being given houses above more deserving T&T citizens in addition to T&T citizenship in return for their votes for the UNC at the next general elections. Most of them practice the same racists behaviour towards folks of African origin as they practiced in Guyana that has helped to destroy the progress of that country as a democracy. I don't agree with them being given T&T citizenship and houses above real T&T citizen for their votes but it has been happening under this PP led government which is increasing racial divisions in the country.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 03:00:22 PM
Trinidad: Government gets support as Senate passes controversial Constitutional bill
Friday, August 29, 2014 | 7:21 AM   
Observer


PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC) – Trinidad and Tobago will celebrate its 52nd year of political independence from Britain over the weekend with the coalition People’s Partnership Government assured of its plans to amend the constitution paving the way for how future parliamentarians are elected.

The Senate late Thursday night followed the Lower House earlier this month and approved the Constitution Amendment Bill by an 18-12 margin that provides for a two-term prime minister, the right to recall legislators and perhaps the most contentious, the need for an elected candidate to obtain 50 per cent of the votes in a general election or face a run-off.

Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar who had earlier indicated she was prepared to face “political suicide” in getting the legislation approved, had to garner the support of three of the nine independent legislators to ensure approval, after the main opposition People’s National Movement (PNM) stood its grounds insisting that there bill needed a special majority and there was also need for more public consultation on the matter.

But as she ended the three days of debate on the legislation, she dismissed critics of the bill as that “one lone voice crying like a wolf in the wilderness”, telling legislators “I’m prepared to face political harakiri - suicide - because I trust the people of Trinidad and Tobago”.

She said this is the “first time a Government has moved from promises to a concerted effort” towards constitutional reform, saying that the promise to change the constitution had been outlined in the manifesto of the coalition government ahead of the 2010 general election.

She also hinted that her coalition administration, which faces a general election next year, would bring legislation for a fixed date for general elections in the twin island republic.

Earlier, some independent legislators, such as Anthony Vieira called on the government to withdraw the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014, noting that he had prayed “for clarity of thought” and “for the power to bring sense and reasoning” in the debate on what was “no doubt...one of the most controversial pieces of legislation” to come to the Parliament.

Vieira said the provision for the recall of non-performing legislator was the proposal which had caused him the “greatest anxiety” and that no grounds were needed for a recall application to be made to the Elections and Boundaries Commission (EBC).

“Once the numbers are there, the petition for recall must be initiated and to my mind such a provision may be open to abuse. One has to question whether on balance the recall provisions will really make MPs accountable to their constituencies or whether we will be in effect emasculating them,” he said.

But in approving the legislation, the Senate accepted several amendments, including one moved by Independent Senator David Small, who later voted with the Government in passing the bill,  to raise the threshold from 10 to 20 per cent for a recall application to be approved by the Elections and Boundaries Commission.

Another Independent Senator Dr Dhansayar Mahabir, who during his contribution had signalled his intention to support the Government once certain amendments were made, got the nod to change the original plan for the run-off that would have only included just the two top finishers.

Mahabir successfully argued that there was need for a third candidate where that person would have secured 25 per cent of the vote or where the third candidate obtains vote amounting to five per cent less than the second runner-up.

The Senate conceded that the new amendment would result in the country’s electoral system being a hybrid one which mixes the majority system, which the run off system was originally meant to achieve, with a plural system.


Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 03:05:47 PM

Quote
She said this is the “first time a Government has moved from promises to a concerted effort” towards constitutional reform, saying that the promise to change the constitution had been outlined in the manifesto of the coalition government ahead of the 2010 general election.


She made promises ..and is keeping them .

Change her at the ballot box and repeal her Reform Changes...
The electorate can do this ..and its very simple...


As I see it we have blind followers  for both major parties ..who don't want changes..
They will complain about any thing that will not follow party suggestions , even not
knowing what it is about .. 

After Mannings failure and treasury looting ...his supporters comments ok lets for get
that he is gone...
So lets see what happens at election time...

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 03:08:18 PM
She said this is the “first time a Government has moved from promises to a concerted effort” towards constitutional reform, saying that the promise to change the constitution had been outlined in the manifesto of the coalition government ahead of the 2010 general election.

That is BS!

The 3rd option in the bill about changing the first-pass-the post electoral system in place since 1962 to a run-off system needing 50% of a minority vote was never part of the manifesto that was discussed.
That option which is the most controversial was undemocratically added to the bill after the discussion because it’s seen by the UNC to give them an advantage in the next elections.

The propaganda campaign to try to get the T&T public to swallow the erosion of their cherished democracy has now started but the general T&T public will not be fooled and the government will pay for all their lies and attempts to deceive the general population at the next general elections despite their bold-faced attempt to undemocratically alter the traditional first pass-the post voting system to their advantage.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 03:38:20 PM
She said this is the “first time a Government has moved from promises to a concerted effort” towards constitutional reform, saying that the promise to change the constitution had been outlined in the manifesto of the coalition government ahead of the 2010 general election.

That is BS!

The 3rd option in the bill about changing the first-pass-the post electoral system in place since 1962 to a run-off system needing 50% of a minority vote was never part of the manifesto that was discussed. That option which is the most controversial was undemocratically added after the discussion because it’s seen by the UNC to give them an advantage in the next elections.

The propaganda campaign to try to get the T&T public to swallow the erosion of their cherished democracy has now started but the general T&T public will not be fooled and the government will pay for all their lies and attempts to deceive the general population at the next general elections despite their bold-faced attempt to undemocratically alter the traditional first pass-the post voting system to their advantage.


If as you claim is BS

Get your party to the next election ballot and vote out the present government ...
Then  repeal all the laws her government has passed ....

You then can pass laws that your party thinks they are democratically elected to do...

I expect we shall see as Manning did, postpone Council elections for 6 years..well you may
have voted for such a democratic process...

No use getting ya panties tied up in a knot ... its just a simple process... :rotfl:

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 03:38:59 PM
As I said before the run off proposal was not an election promise and was not in the PP manifesto. socafighter cannot refute this but instead she/he has been submitted to saying 'she campaigned on Reform Changes"

The PP campaigned an election on constitution reform that will derive from public consultations. They formed a commission responsible for consultations that was lead by one of their own coalition members, instead of someone who was independent. After four years (close to next election year) in office they drafted a bill that had a run off proposal that was never consulted by the public. Also there are parliamentarians who are saying the consultations were not widespread and did not reach every constituency. Anyway the public divide on this bill come mostly from the run off  which is seen to be inserted as a scheme to win an election. Regardless of your political affiliation the run off proposal which taints an entire bill that was pretty much forced into legislation in less than three weeks is causing more ethnic divide in T&T

So in the end what promises did she keep again ?
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 03:48:07 PM
Anything else you want to add socafighter?

Quote
The run-off proposal, however, the most controversial aspect of the

bill, did not feature in the People’s Partnership mani­festo, in the main consultations around the country or in the CRC’s report, she said
.

Hodge said the run-off ballot was a mechanism and not a principle, and the CRC agreed, in the first instance, to a set of principles.

“Not every detail regarding how to implement these principles would have been worked out by members of the CRC, nor would these details have come necessarily from members of the public who participated in the consultation process,” she said. “But the CRC signed off on the whole package—principles, as well as implementation methodology. Therefore, we have to take responsibility.


http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/STOP--THE--DEBATE-270420141.html (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/STOP--THE--DEBATE-270420141.html)

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 03:49:21 PM
She said this is the “first time a Government has moved from promises to a concerted effort” towards constitutional reform, saying that the promise to change the constitution had been outlined in the manifesto of the coalition government ahead of the 2010 general election.

That is BS!

The 3rd option in the bill about changing the first-pass-the post electoral system in place since 1962 to a run-off system needing 50% of a minority vote was never part of the manifesto that was discussed. That option which is the most controversial was undemocratically added after the discussion because it’s seen by the UNC to give them an advantage in the next elections.

The propaganda campaign to try to get the T&T public to swallow the erosion of their cherished democracy has now started but the general T&T public will not be fooled and the government will pay for all their lies and attempts to deceive the general population at the next general elections despite their bold-faced attempt to undemocratically alter the traditional first pass-the post voting system to their advantage.


If as you claim is BS

Get your party to the next election ballot and vote out the present government ...
Then  repeal all the laws her government has passed ....

You then can pass laws that your party thinks they are democratically elected to do...

I expect we shall see as Manning did, postpone Council elections for 6 years..well you may
have voted for such a democratic process...

No use getting ya panties tied up in a knot ... its just a simple process... :rotfl:

This is not a simple process if the government plans work out. The government knows that most of the T&T electorate who are not blinded by racial voting plan to vote them out at the next elections so they have put a number of measures in place to steal the next elections and this change of the voting system to allow more time to buy votes in the marginal seats is part of the plan along with flooding the marginals with Guyanese and other voters recently granted housing and T&T citizenship.

I think this change in the voting system will be overturned in the courts as it is clearly undemocratic and that is the only thing that will save T&T from becoming a two party dictatorship as this undemocratic change in the voting system is clearly designed to do.

PS:
You can laugh about this because you are no longer a T&T citizen but this is no laughing matter as democracy in T&T could be lost forever if this undemocratic change in the electoral process is exploited by any of the two major parties.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 Thread
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 03:52:17 PM
As I said before the run off proposal was not an election promise and was not in the PP manifesto. socafighter cannot refute this but instead she has been submitted to saying 'she campaigned on Reform Changes"

The PP campaigned an election on constitution reform that will derive from public consultations. They formed a commission responsible for consultations that was lead by one of their own coalition members, instead of someone who was independent. After four years (close to next election year) in office they drafted a bill that had a run off proposal that was never consulted by the public. Also there are parliamentarians who are saying the consultations were not widespread and did not reach every constituency. Anyway the public divide on this bill come mostly from the run off  which is seen to be inserted as a scheme to win an election. Regardless if your political affiliation the run off proposal which taints an entire bill that was pretty much forced into legislation in less than three weeks is causing more ethnic divide in T&T

So in the end what promises did she keep again ?


Quote
After four years (close to next election year) in office they drafted a bill that had a run off proposal that was never consulted by the public. Also there are parliamentarians who are saying the consultations were not widespread and did not reach every constituency. Anyway the public divide on this bill come mostly from the run off  which is seen to be inserted as a scheme to win an election.

You are saying the public was not consulted...
You are saying then ...the consultations were not widespread...
You are saying it didn't reach every constituency ...

You have a common denominator here ..did the party you support  claim this , since the
above three lines all conflict with each other ...typical of Party supporters who don't think...

I have never voted in any elections in T&T , I was born in Trinidad , left at an early age for
France . I am a citizen of Canada , don't hold dual citizenship .
Now I have no party affiliations whatsoever....so I cannot be accused of party affiliation.

I am viewing this on logic and common sense .
A party in power voted in by the electorate  ....you and cohorts don't like what legislation/s
is/are  passed in Parliament .... a process is out there in the public domain..

Gather the supporters and out vote them from Office and repeal the legislations ...
its so simple ... democracy at its best ...


Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 03:57:33 PM
As I said before the run off proposal was not an election promise and was not in the PP manifesto. socafighter cannot refute this but instead she has been submitted to saying 'she campaigned on Reform Changes"

The PP campaigned an election on constitution reform that will derive from public consultations. They formed a commission responsible for consultations that was lead by one of their own coalition members, instead of someone who was independent. After four years (close to next election year) in office they drafted a bill that had a run off proposal that was never consulted by the public. Also there are parliamentarians who are saying the consultations were not widespread and did not reach every constituency. Anyway the public divide on this bill come mostly from the run off  which is seen to be inserted as a scheme to win an election. Regardless if your political affiliation the run off proposal which taints an entire bill that was pretty much forced into legislation in less than three weeks is causing more ethnic divide in T&T

So in the end what promises did she keep again ?


Quote
After four years (close to next election year) in office they drafted a bill that had a run off proposal that was never consulted by the public. Also there are parliamentarians who are saying the consultations were not widespread and did not reach every constituency. Anyway the public divide on this bill come mostly from the run off  which is seen to be inserted as a scheme to win an election.

You are saying the public was not consulted...
You are saying then ...the consultations were not widespread...
You are saying it didn't reach every constituency ...

You have a common denominator here ..did the party you support  claim this , since the
above three lines all conflict with each other ...typical of Party supporters who don't think.

 :D shows how much you are either misinformed or ignorant about everything that has happened concerning this bill.

EVERYTHING I said can be supported if you search the info online. Safe to say that you are not one who is convinced verbally so search the info yourself. I have posted numerous links in this thread and other threads that support the claim that the run off proposal was NOT part of public consultations, rejected by a large sector of the public and forced into legislation.

Now if this bothers you then I suggest you don't read what is being posted in this thread. Because there is reality and there is fantasy and you seem to want to accept fantasy
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 04:00:30 PM
Quote
This is not a simple process if the government plans work out. The government knows that most of the T&T electorate who are not blinded by racial voting plan to vote them out at the next elections so they have put a number of measures in place to steal the next elections and this change of the voting system to allowing more time to buy votes in the marginal seats is part of the plan along with flooding the marginals with Guyanese and other voters recently granted housing and T&T citizenship.

I think this change the voting system will be overturned in the courts as it is clearly undemocratic and that is the only thing that will save T&T from becoming a two party dictatorship as this undemocratic change in the voting system is clearly designed to do.


Now lets look at a simple problem...

Panday calls an election ...it results in a tie

In a democracy it goes back to the last ruling government in Power .

The President decides he wants his religious beliefs to be in power ..he chose Manning
did you notice the former president comments years later ..

Who cheated who ?...did the voters have a choice ??
One man did  and many years later we saw his true colors ...
The electorate outvoted him , before his party could call a non confidence motion...
Oh didn't they call this PM a dictator ...

As I have humbly stated ..the electorate will decide  the results , they always do...



Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 04:08:29 PM

Quote
:D shows how much you are either misinformed or ignorant about everything that has happened concerning this bill.

EVERYTHING I said can be supported if you search the info online. Safe to say that you are not one who is convinced verbally so search the info yourself. I have posted numerous links in this thread and other threads that support the claim that the run off proposal was NOT part of public consultations, rejected by a large sector of the public and forced into legislation.

Now if this bothers you then I suggest you don't read what is being posted in this thread. Because there is reality and there is fantasy and you seem to want to accept fantasy


You have yet to convince me ...
Show me her Election promises ...
Show me what she promised ...
Show me what she and her cabinet changed .
She held consultations ..the opposition hardly was present...

Now the Opposition supporters are claiming ..we go be cheated...it hasn't
happened as yet ...the last election only one run off would have been necessary .
Did your party you supported tell you this ???

I am not showing any emotion in my comments , I have no affiliation with any party
in Trinidad and Tobago.

I am viewing this on logic and common sense .
A party in power voted in by the electorate  ....you and cohorts don't like what legislation/s
is/are  passed in Parliament .... a process is out there in the public domain..

Gather the supporters and out vote them from Office and repeal the legislations ...
its so simple ... democracy at its best ...
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 04:10:48 PM
Anything else you want to add socafighter?

Quote
The run-off proposal, however, the most controversial aspect of the

bill, did not feature in the People’s Partnership mani­festo, in the main consultations around the country or in the CRC’s report, she said
.

Hodge said the run-off ballot was a mechanism and not a principle, and the CRC agreed, in the first instance, to a set of principles.

“Not every detail regarding how to implement these principles would have been worked out by members of the CRC, nor would these details have come necessarily from members of the public who participated in the consultation process,” she said. “But the CRC signed off on the whole package—principles, as well as implementation methodology. Therefore, we have to take responsibility.


http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/STOP--THE--DEBATE-270420141.html (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/STOP--THE--DEBATE-270420141.html)


Oh let me add more for socafighter since he/she claims the common denominator is me making claims, here take the opinions of other who are saying the SAME  :)

More consultation was better way to go, says Dumas

Former head of the public service Reginald Dumas says Government should have put the Constitutional (Amendment) Bill 2014 on hold, and established an independent team, including a United Nations expert on elections, to consult with citizens.

The bill, which proposes two-term limits for prime ministers, the right to recall non-performing MPs and a runoff vote, was approved with amendments in the Senate on Thursday night with the votes of Independent Senators Dr Rolph Balgobin, Dhanayshar Mahabir and David Small. It will now be returned to the House of Representatives for the amendments to be accepted.

But speaking in a telephone interview yesterday, Dumas said he would have preferred the legislation be put on hold to allow for the new team to be set up. Dumas said the independent committee should have been made to focus “not so much the runoff proposal (but) a fair system of voting.”

http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2014-08-30/more-consultation-was-better-way-go-says-dumas

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 04:12:10 PM
Quote
This is not a simple process if the government plans work out. The government knows that most of the T&T electorate who are not blinded by racial voting plan to vote them out at the next elections so they have put a number of measures in place to steal the next elections and this change of the voting system to allowing more time to buy votes in the marginal seats is part of the plan along with flooding the marginals with Guyanese and other voters recently granted housing and T&T citizenship.

I think this change the voting system will be overturned in the courts as it is clearly undemocratic and that is the only thing that will save T&T from becoming a two party dictatorship as this undemocratic change in the voting system is clearly designed to do.


Now lets look at a simple problem...

Panday calls an election ...it results in a tie

In a democracy it goes back to the last ruling government in Power .

The President decides he wants his religious beliefs to be in power ..he chose Manning
did you notice the former president comments years later ..

Who cheated who ?...did the voters have a choice ??
One man did  and many years later we saw his true colors ...
The electorate outvoted him , before his party could call a non confidence motion...
Oh didn't they call this PM a dictator ...

As I have humbly stated ..the electorate will decide  the results , they always do...

You clearly don’t understand the impact of these electoral changes if they go thru and become law and why they are now being challenged in court by one of the 3rd parties so why join the discussion in this thread?
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 04:12:34 PM
 :D socafighter is still disputing the fact that the run off portion of this Constitution Reform was not an election promise or part of the PP manifesto and was never part of public consultations

Anyway I am not here to convince you. I will continue to post the facts as they present themselves
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 04:13:08 PM
Sando Prince

I have always viewed Dumas as a puppet of the PNM ...

It would be wise to chose someone with better credibility with no party affiliations...
 :rotfl:
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 04:14:21 PM


Sando Prince

I have always viewed Dumas as a puppet of the PNM ...

It would be wise to chose someone with better credibility with no party affiliations...
 :rotfl:

 :D Your view = common denominator. Since you understand everything in math
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 04:18:44 PM
GIVE IT A CHANCE
Senior counsel, religious leaders weigh in on Constitution Bill:


By port of spain \\\\\ Kim Boodram
Story Created: Aug 29, 2014 at 10:43 PM ECT
Express

A willingness to give the Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014 a chance appears to have come from Martin Daly SC, who said yesterday it will not obliterate smaller, third parties as feared.

The bill was passed on Thursday in the Senate, at Tower D, International

Waterfront Centre, Port of Spain, after amendments were made to the controversial run-off provision.

Daly told TV6 News yesterday as a result of the negotiations between Independent senators and Government, there has been an “interesting experiment in constitutional reform”.

The negotiating also helped smooth out flaws in the bill, he said.

He said the intense negotiations during the committee stage of the bill will show the checks and balan­ces in the governance system do work.

“Whatever you think of the concession the Government made, it can’t be said that the bill, which will become an act, will obliterate third parties,” Daly said.

“It’s really the unelected members who have the biggest influence on the process, and I think it worked to our advantage,” Daly said.

Stoking the ire of parts of civil society is the run-off clause in par­tic­ular, which allows for a second go at the polls between the two headers of a constituency.

This clause was not discussed with the public nor, according to former member of the Constitution Reform Commission (CRC) Dr Merle Hodge, with the commission itself.

That commission was chaired by Legal Affairs Minister Prakash Ramadhar, an arrangement viewed by some as slanting the work of the commission from the start.

The other provisions that have caused controversy are proposed two-term limits for prime ministers and the right of recall for MPs.

However, former head of the Public Service Reginald Dumas remained staunch yesterday in his disagreement with Government’s lack of consultation on the run-off clause of the Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014.

Dumas last week wrote to Senate president Timothy Hamel-Smith, asking that Hamel-Smith recuse himself from the August 26 debate, based on an e-mail he, Hamel-Smith, was alleged to have circula­ted to various people, asking that they support a call for the bill to be taken to a Joint Select Committee.

Hamel-Smith left days later on a vacation he said had been booked before the bill issue came up, giving way to Senate vice-president James Lambert.

Speaking via telephone from his home in Bacolet, Tobago, yesterday, Dumas said he did not object in principle to the provisions for recall and limited terms for prime ministers as they have featured in local political literature in the past.

With regard to the right of recall, Dumas said a lot of MPs have not behaved properly towards their constituents—but with such legislation, “the devil is in the details”.

Dumas said his consternation remained with the run-off clause.

“The matter was not even discussed by the population,” Dumas said.

“It did not even come up. You can’t have feedback if there is nothing to feed back.”

Dumas said the manner in which the clause was brought to the public’s eye is “completely erroneous”.

“I resent that because it brought the people into something they know nothing about,” he said.

He said he has observed, as well, the report produced by the CRC did not contain a terms of reference (ToR), though members have in the past repeatedly referred to their “mandate”.

“What in God’s name is their mandate or their remit?,” Dumas asked, adding such reports are typically required to contain a ToR.

He said he has never been part of a commission that did not include a ToR in its documents or written a report without its ToR having been set out.

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 04:20:28 PM

An Officer of the Court is asking to give it a chance ...

It proves my point ...if it doesn't work...we can change it .

Why judge this legislation based on party affiliation and emotion... :rotfl:

How many trust that character ..unless one lives in this electorate district ... :rotfl:
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 04:21:38 PM
Same tingz ah hearing from other Trinis. This woman hit the nail on the head with this.. It's not the norm for Independent senators to engage with constituents on issues

Quote
This is the point made by Dr Merle Hodge in her two statements about the process leading to the bill and the bill itself. Addressing the run-off provision, Hodge said, “Citizens are finding this proposal to be potentially destructive of democracy, and as a citizen myself, benefitting from their wisdom, I have to say that I agree with that analysis.”

This, Senator Balgobin, is the benefit of consultation and this, Sir, contradicts your comment: “If you sign, you sign.”

Independent Senators, not having faced the polls and the people, are unaccustomed to interaction with the public on issues that arise in the Senate.

This bill has been unusual in the boil it has generated among the population. In that context, I can understand Senator Mahabir’s hurt that he was booed by lobbyists outside the Parliament on Tuesday.

http://www.trinidadexpress.com/commentaries/Boos-that-come-not-back-273116541.html


Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 04:23:23 PM
Socapro..

Quote
You clearly don’t understand the impact of these electoral changes if they go thru and become law and why they are now being challenged in court by one of the 3rd parties so why join the discussion in this thread?

I am enjoying this debate its how I learn , I was taught at an early age by my Father , make sure you hear the other side before making a decision...its something I have followed throughout my life.

I view Sando prince and you are intelligent fellow Trinis....

My problem is that 3rd party and its leader and elected member...

As soon as this 3rd Party entered the discussion ..all focus are lost ...other than his
electorate ..how many really trust this character to have power ...

 :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl:
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 04:31:55 PM


An Officer of the Court is asking to give it a chance ...

It proves my point ...if it doesn't work...we can change it .

Why judge this legislation based on party affiliation and emotion... :rotfl:
That officer of the court does not represent the views of the General T&T population.

The point is the electoral reform decreases democracy rather than increases it which is why it is now being challenged in court by one of the 3 parties. Do you think if they agreed that it would not negatively affect them and would increase democracy that a 3rd party would challenge the change?

The point is if this change is accepted and signed into law by the T&T president that T&T will become a two party dictatorship and there is no question about that.

Only people who support T&T being run by a two party dictatorship will logically support this change in the electoral system.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 04:35:15 PM


An Officer of the Court is asking to give it a chance ...

It proves my point ...if it doesn't work...we can change it .

Why judge this legislation based on party affiliation and emotion... :rotfl:
That officer of the court does not represent the views of the General T&T population.

The point is the electoral reform decreases democracy rather than increases it which is why it is now being challenged in court by one of the 3 parties. Do you think if they agreed that it would not negatively affect them and would increase democracy that a 3rd party would challenge the change?

The point is if this change is accepted and signed into law by the T&T president that T&T will become a two party dictatorship and there is no question about that.

Only people who support T&T being run by a two party dictatorship will logically support this change in the electoral system.

Socaro

I have seen some polls that support the legislation... are they wrong...

Now who leads this 3rd Party ...its all I need to say ..
Who would want this Character as PM...???

Not a good point in this debate ... :rotfl:

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 04:36:06 PM


An Officer of the Court is asking to give it a chance ...

It proves my point ...if it doesn't work...we can change it .

Why judge this legislation based on party affiliation and emotion... :rotfl:
That officer of the court does not represent the views of the General T&T population.

The point is the electoral reform decreases democracy rather than increases it which is why it is now being challenged in court by one of the 3 parties. Do you think if they agreed that it would not negatively affect them and would increase democracy that a 3rd party would challenge the change?

The point is if this change is accepted and signed into law by the T&T president that T&T will become a two party dictatorship and there is no question about that.

Only people who support T&T being run by a two party dictatorship will logically support this change in the electoral system.
You do realize that there are other 3rd parties outside of the ILP that will also be negatively affected by this change in the electoral system?

This is no doubt that the change decreases rather than increases democracy as the PP government has been touting while taking the T&T public for fools.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 04:39:38 PM


Socapro ..

You and I know they these 3rd parties have no chance ...

It will be a UNC vs PNM fight in the end ....the rest will be watching from the outside...

In the last election only one seat would have met the mandate of a recall vote ...
see its not a problem...

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 04:39:52 PM


An Officer of the Court is asking to give it a chance ...

It proves my point ...if it doesn't work...we can change it .

Why judge this legislation based on party affiliation and emotion... :rotfl:
That officer of the court does not represent the views of the General T&T population.

The point is the electoral reform decreases democracy rather than increases it which is why it is now being challenged in court by one of the 3 parties. Do you think if they agreed that it would not negatively affect them and would increase democracy that a 3rd party would challenge the change?

The point is if this change is accepted and signed into law by the T&T president that T&T will become a two party dictatorship and there is no question about that.

Only people who support T&T being run by a two party dictatorship will logically support this change in the electoral system.

Socaro

Now who leads this 3rd Party ...its all I need to say ..
Who would want this Character as PM...???

Not a good point in this debate ... :rotfl:

You are missing the point entirely as there are other 3rd parties who are also negatively affected.

The point is that ALL "3rd parties" outside of the two major parties will be negatively affected by this undemocratic change to the voting system.

It is not healthy for the future of the country for T&T to be turned into a two party dictatorship.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 04:42:00 PM


Socapro ..

You and I know they these 3rd parties have no chance ...

It will be a UNC vs PNM fight in the end ....the rest will be watching from the outside...

In the last election only one seat would have met the mandate of a recall vote ...
see its not a problem...

You are proving my point that this change in the electoral system is undemocratic and to the disadvantage of the rise of any "3rd party" as a major challenger to win the elections.
It also facilitates corruption and the buying of votes by any of the two major parties in the marginal seats which again is not healthy for democracy.

I rest my case.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 04:49:38 PM


Socapro ..

You and I know they these 3rd parties have no chance ...

It will be a UNC vs PNM fight in the end ....the rest will be watching from the outside...

In the last election only one seat would have met the mandate of a recall vote ...
see its not a problem...


Ha! Spoken like a true UNC supporter who fear the PNM winning the next election after seeing the yellow party losing local elections, bye election in St Joseph and THA elections in Tobago. licks and more licks is just too much for the yellow jersey supporters

However there is a flaw in your argument. COP is the reason why the UNC is in government and they are a third party who won a few seats last general elections that are really traditional PNM seats. Therefore COP as a third party has caused damage in a general election setting.

Truth be told if this run off poll existed in 2007 elections PNM would still have won the same number of seats and possibly two more seats due to the non existence of the split vote second time around. But like another poster has said this is not about winning a seat the second time around, where the system will force voters to choose between two candidates that may not either be one of their original choices . This is not about about your affiliation to PNM or UNC but instead it's about a piece of legislation where the incumbent gaining an advantage.


Quote
“As I stand here tonight we of the PNM say, and I am saying this without fear of contradiction, they could change the rules, they could call elections, they could do what they want, the People’s National Movement will win the next general election,” Robinson-Regis said.

“And Mr Vice-President let me put it on the record that upon winning the next general election if this piece of legislation is passed the People’s National Movement will repeal it right away because Mr Vice-President it is said that this piece of legislation may be an advantage to the incumbent Government, to any incumbent government,” she said.


http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/Robinson-Regis-Change--of-rules-to-gain-advantage-273118231.html

Title: More time for runoff
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 05:12:56 PM
More time for runoff (http://www.newsday.co.tt/news/0,199767.html)
By Andre Bagoo Saturday, August 30 2014 (T&T Newsday)

THE ELECTIONS and Boundaries Commission (EBC) will be given a potentially wider window to conduct any runoff polls during a general election process under amendments passed in the Senate on Thursday night.


The Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014 stipulated that if no candidate receives a majority of the votes cast, a runoff poll was due, “on the fifteenth day following the date of the first poll.” However, sources said the EBC had confidentially responded to a request for comments on procedural matters issued to it by the Office of the Chief Parliamentary Counsel.

One concern expressed by the EBC related to the 15-day provision, stating that a fixed 15-day window was potentially too narrow, given the possibility of a recount being taken.

As such, on Thursday night, the Government tabled an amendment which stated that the 15 days will run not from the date of the first poll, but rather the declaration of the results. This means that, potentially, there will be a longer time-frame between the first and second poll, if a recount is called for in a seat.

“The EBC expressed concern about their ability to be ready for a runoff between the first and second poll, if there is a recount,” Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissesar said yesterday. “We therefore made a provision which says it will be 15 days, following the declaration of results by the EBC. You still have the 15 days, but time will run from the declaration.”

On the question of the 15-day provision, chairman of the EBC, Dr Norbert Masson, yesterday confirmed the matter had been raised. He said, “the 15-day period is going to place a tremendous burden on the EBC, as this is the first time you will be having this procedure.” He added, “however, all hands will be on deck.”

Under the Election Rules, any candidate may, the day after a poll, request a recount, a process which itself has no specified time-line in the Rules.

The Constitutional (Amendment) Bill 2014 was passed at 11.07 pm on Thursday with amendments after three days of debate.

Due to there being amendments, the bill will now return to the House of Representatives – where it had been approved more than two weeks ago – for approval of Senate changes, a matter which can be brought as a motion on the Order Paper.

However, Government sources yesterday confirmed the last stage of the bill will not be taken before the Budget, which is due on September 8. Thereafter, the Budget debate is due to begin on September 12 under the new Standing Orders with the response of the Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley. The debate will run for, at most four days. There is then a possibly five-day Finance Committee meeting. This means that there will be more time, possibly several weeks, before the House is called upon to approve the Senate amendments.

The Government has the option of passing a simple motion to approve the amendments at the very end of the Budget debate, whenever that may be. The matter is to be determined by the Parliament caucus.

Among the amendments on Thursday were: a provision tabled by Independent Senator Dr Dhanayshar Mahabir stating that a third party that comes within five points of second place can participate in a runoff; a higher threshold (20 percent) to trigger recall petitions; making recall possible after two years and six months; giving the EBC custody of all recall petitions; ensuring the runoff law text is in harmony with Section 73 of the Constitution and consequential amendments to Representation of the People Act, relating to regulations guiding the custodians of election records.

In relation to the amendment to give the EBC custody of the recall petitions, Persad-Bissessar said, “The EBC will have total custody and control of all the signatures and venues to safeguard the integrity of the process.”

On the Government’s decision to accept Independent Senator Dr Dhanayshar Mahabir’s “triangulaire” amendment to the runoff – which will see third parties that finish close to the second place candidate contest a supplemental poll – the Prime Minister said this was accepted in light of concerns aired.

“There were concerns with respect to the effect upon third parties,” she said. “The amendment gives an opportunity to third parties who come fairly close to get another chance. In effect, if you come that close you get a chance again. In this way you will more precisely give effect to the will of voters.” She said the two-candidate runoff remains in cases where the third party does not fall within five points, and none of the top performers get a majority.

Sources yesterday said the EBC has also expressed concern over any additional costs that may have to be met by a runoff, or series of runoffs, given that general elections normally can cost between $23 million to $40 million. As such, it is understood that the EBC has proposed “a large contingency fund” to provide support to any election, a matter which is now under consideration by the Cabinet, and which is likely to be addressed in the Budget 2015 provisions, or a supplemental appropriation. No figure, however, has been disclosed for a fund. Masson declined comment on this issue.

After Senate amendments on a bill are approved by the House, that bill will then have to be assented to by President Anthony Carmona. But in the case of the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014, should it become law it will still not take effect until the President proclaims it, upon the advice of the Cabinet.

On Thursday night, Attorney General Anand Ramlogan stated in the bill’s committee stage that is when the law comes into effect, is a matter for the Cabinet. Ramlogan said, “The date for proclamation is a matter of Cabinet, and when a decision is taken, that is a matter that will be Gazetted and published.”
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Michael-j on August 30, 2014, 05:42:05 PM


Socapro ..



Ha! Spoken like a true UNC supporter who fear the PNM winning the next election after seeing the yellow party losing local elections, bye election in St Joseph and THA elections in Tobago. licks and more licks is just too much for the yellow jersey supporters

However there is a flaw in your argument. COP is the reason why the UNC is in government and they are a third party who won a few seats last general elections that are really traditional PNM seats. Therefore COP as a third party has caused damage in a general election setting.

Truth be told if this run off poll existed in 2007 elections PNM would still have won the same number of seats and possibly two more seats due to the non existence of the split vote second time around. But like another poster has said this is not about winning a seat the second time around, where the system will force voters to choose between two candidates that may not either be one of their original choices . This is not about about your affiliation to PNM or UNC but instead it's about a piece of legislation where the incumbent gaining an advantage.





In  2010 the COP wasn't exactly a third party.....the coalition was formed prior to the election and, as such, no members of the coalition  contested the same seats. This was done to create a one vs one battle with the PNM in every constituency so there was effectively no third party; voting for the COP and voting for the UNC were essentially the same thing ( where there was no COP candidate there was a UNC candidate and vice versa so a vote for either was a vote for the coalition).
Title: ILP sues over Runoff Bill
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 05:48:14 PM
ILP sues over Runoff Bill (http://www.newsday.co.tt/news/0,199768.html)
By SEAN DOUGLAS Saturday, August 30 2014 (T&T Newsday)

Mere hours after a split Senate passed an amended Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014 — which now reverts to the Lower House to mull the changes — the Independent Liberal Party (ILP) yesterday filed a constitutional motion in the High Court against the measure.


This was disclosed yesterday by Independent Liberal Party ((ILP) deputy political leader, Rekha Ramjit, during a news briefing at the party’s headquarters at Edward Street, Port-of-Spain, attended by party officials including ILP political leader, Lyndira Oudit, and chairman, Jack Warner.

The legal action, according to Ramjit, argues that the bill breaches constitutional rights, as detailed in the affidavits also filed yesterday by two citizens, Sherwin Mitchell and Dane Francois, both ILP members. Mitchell has complained the Bill breaches his constitutional right as an elector, while Francois has alleged the Bill violates his rights as a potential general election candidate.

Although the Bill has not yet reached the stage of presidential assent and so is not yet law, Ramjit said it is the ILP’s position that an aggrieved individual can file a constitutional motion under Section 14(1) of the Constitution which recognises not only instances where rights are violated, but also cases where there is a threat that rights may be abrogated.

“It will soon be served on the Attorney General,” Ramjit said. “It has been docketed to Justice Frank Seepersad, a fearless judge.”

She said Section 4 of the Constitution states rights including freedom of political expression, while Section 5 says no law must infringe those rights, even as section 13 says any infringement can only be done with a three-fifths special majority. Even as section 73 of the Constitution says you elect a Lower House by a first-past-the-post system, Ramjit said the bill amends this to also add a runoff.

She warned however that this new system could create an inequality of treatment in violation of constitutional norms. A third party who wins over 25 percent of votes-cast and/or is within five percent of the second placed rival, may proceed to the second runoff, but not so for a candidate winning under 25 percent at the first ballot. Ramjit contends that all this creates an “inequality of treatment” in breach of the Constitution.

Ramjit said rights can be abrogated but only if you have reasonable justification and the support of a three-fifths parliamentary majority, “not any simple majority as espoused by the Government.”

Oudit said if the People’s National Movement and, or, former attorney general Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj also seek to bring such a motion, the judge would have to decide if to hear all motions together.

Oudit, when asked if they might ask President Anthony Carmona to refuse to assent and proclaim the bill, responded the party would consider writing to ask the President to familiarise himself with the issues around the bill.

Warner said letters are currently being drafted to take the issue to Caricom and the Commonwealth, even as Oudit, having done an interview with the Miami Herald, noted that the issue had gone international.

Oudit said all the public had asked the Government for was some more time to mull the Bill. She said the Government was to be blamed for failing to adequately inform the general population about the bill. Responding to whether the bill represented a United National Congress grab for ILP votes as once suggested by Warner, Oudit said the Bill was designed for the small parties and marginal seats. “What makes a difference in the marginal constituencies is the presence or absence of minority parties,” she said.

Warner quipped, “This is the first election you have to go to listen to the results with a calculator. You can’t have fete or champagne.”

Warner alleged that in last year’s St Joseph bye-election, he had been approached by two Government officials who asked him to withdraw the candidacy of the ILP’s Om Lalla, in exchange for which Lalla would be made Justice Minister and a Senator. “I declined,” related Warner, saying that attempt to accrue the ILP vote-share was the genesis of the current bill to amend the electoral process.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 05:53:43 PM


Socapro ..



Ha! Spoken like a true UNC supporter who fear the PNM winning the next election after seeing the yellow party losing local elections, bye election in St Joseph and THA elections in Tobago. licks and more licks is just too much for the yellow jersey supporters

However there is a flaw in your argument. COP is the reason why the UNC is in government and they are a third party who won a few seats last general elections that are really traditional PNM seats. Therefore COP as a third party has caused damage in a general election setting.

Truth be told if this run off poll existed in 2007 elections PNM would still have won the same number of seats and possibly two more seats due to the non existence of the split vote second time around. But like another poster has said this is not about winning a seat the second time around, where the system will force voters to choose between two candidates that may not either be one of their original choices . This is not about about your affiliation to PNM or UNC but instead it's about a piece of legislation where the incumbent gaining an advantage.





In  2010 the COP wasn't exactly a third party.....the coalition was formed prior to the election and, as such, no members of the coalition  contested the same seats. This was done to create a one vs one battle with the PNM in every constituency so there was effectively no third party; voting for the COP and voting for the UNC were essentially the same thing ( where there was no COP candidate there was a UNC candidate and vice versa so a vote for either was a vote for the coalition).


You are correct ...

It will now end this debate ...
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 06:02:38 PM



   
Quote
Ha! Spoken like a true UNC supporter who fear the PNM winning the next election after seeing the yellow party losing local elections, bye election in St Joseph and THA elections in Tobago. licks and more licks is just too much for the yellow jersey supporters

However there is a flaw in your argument. COP is the reason why the UNC is in government and they are a third party who won a few seats last general elections that are really traditional PNM seats. Therefore COP as a third party has caused damage in a general election setting.

Truth be told if this run off poll existed in 2007 elections PNM would still have won the same number of seats and possibly two more seats due to the non existence of the split vote second time around. But like another poster has said this is not about winning a seat the second time around, where the system will force voters
to choose a candidate that was not their first option

 
Quote
In  2010 the COP wasn't exactly a third party.....the coalition was formed prior to the election and, as such, no members of the coalition  contested the same seats. This was done to create a one vs one battle with the PNM in every constituency so there was effectively no third party; voting for the COP and voting for the UNC were essentially the same thing ( where there was no COP candidate there was a UNC candidate and vice versa so a vote for either was a vote for the coalition).




You are right. I was making an attempt to exlain they were still a third party in terms of electorate voting results. In terms of seats it's wrong for me to say they won it as a third party because they combined with the UNC to form a coalition to win seats but they are still a 'third party' backa 'third party' who helped from a coalition but they were still a third party who cause damage in votes. When you look at the final voting tally the numbers speak for themselves. It's easy to see they could have won a seat in a run off situation back then. However today their party is not not even as half strong as it was back then when PNM popularity was low due tontine unpopularity of its political leader.

But I will regress and retract that part of my previous post because it was worded wrong.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 06:07:19 PM


Now if the present government loses the election....

Here is what your party will do...

Quote
“As I stand here tonight we of the PNM say, and I am saying this without fear of contradiction, they could change the rules, they could call elections, they could do what they want, the People’s National Movement will win the next general election,” Robinson-Regis said.

“And Mr Vice-President let me put it on the record that upon winning the next general election if this piece of legislation is passed the People’s National Movement will repeal it right away because Mr Vice-President it is said that this piece of legislation may be an advantage to the incumbent Government, to any incumbent government,” she said.


Now what is the problem ....Rowley is so sure of winning why is the party complaining ...

Dem go win in the East ..dem go win the west , Dem go win the North , deem go win the South ..

You should be happy ... :rotfl: :rotfl:
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 06:10:20 PM
Added pressure for EBC (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/Added-pressure-for-EBC-273270631.html)
By Port of Spain Kim Boodram
Story Created: Aug 29, 2014 at 10:34 PM ECT (T&T Express)

Mere hours after a split Senate passed an amended Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014 — which now reverts to the Lower House to mull the changes — the Independent Liberal Party (ILP) yesterday filed a constitutional motion in the High Court against the measure.


THE possibility of “tremendous” added costs is now facing the Elections and Boundaries Commission (EBC) with the passing in the Senate, on Thursday night, of the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014, commission chairman Norbert Masson said yesterday.

Masson, speaking to the Express via telephone, said the commission cannot at this time comment in detail until the bill is viewed by the EBC committee, but there is concern about the implementation of the necessary procedures.

The bill was passed in the Upper House with amendments and must therefore now return to the Lower House for debate. The bill will not become law until passed again in the Lower House, where the Government had the majority in the first round.

Three provisions of the proposed legislation have caused uproar and led to the Government being accused of acting in secret and bringing into the House material that was not vetted by the public through proper consultation.

The electoral changes proposed are a two-term limit for prime minis­ters, the right of recall of MPs and a run-off provision for general and by-elections, which detractors of the bill have said will negate the chances of small political parties at the polls.

The next general election is due in 2015.

Other perceived problems are forecast from the provision in the event of a run-off, including the management of special voters, who are usually accommodated prior to the actual polling day.

Masson said the commission is concerned about what will be required under the election rules in order to put into effect the provisions of the bill and the amendments to the Representation of the People’s Act.

“All the procedures that we have to implement, we have to implement within a certain time-frame,” Masson said.

However, he added the bill is yet to be studied and the commission would not want to be premature or be guided simply by what appears in the media.

He said, though, there is going to be “significant increase in the cost and considerable administrative pressure on the department of the commission”.

The added pressure from implementing the act and its subsidiary legislation, which is new to the electoral landscape, will fall on the Chief Elections Officer and all election officers, he said, including the Returning Officer and all polling-day staff.

“There has to be a big contingency cost allowance,” Masson said. “But we can’t comment in detail until we see the legislation.”

Masson said it must also be borne in mind the commission is and remains an “apolitical body”.

And the Opposition People’s National Movement (PNM) will not stand for the implementation of the bill, with PNM public relations officer Faris Al-Rawi saying yesterday the party will fight it from every avenue.

“The PNM intends to challenge the passage of the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014 and it intends to do so in every forum available—from the public platform to the courts,” Al-Rawi said in a telephone interview.

“All options are being explored.”

Al-Rawi said the PNM maintains the bill is unconstitutional” and displays a “sinister lack of logic and naked contradiction of policy” on the part of the People’s Partnership Government.

“The original statement of poli­cy from the Government is that a run-off is designed to cure the mischief of a candidate being elected an MP with less than 50 per cent of the votes,” Al-Rawi said.

“The amendment now allows the run-off to produce a victor with less than 50 per cent of the votes.”

Al-Rawi said neither Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar, who piloted the bill in the Senate on Tuesday, nor the Independent senators, who voted for the document, were able to explain the conflict. “The extreme foolishness of seeking to cure the lack of consultation on the run-off proposal by introducing amendments to it is something that will not be stomached by the population.”

Al-Rawi said the amendments infringe on established law and procedure, as the first-past-the-post system involves only one past the post, not two.

He said the changes require at least a three-fifths majority and the vote in the Senate was “one vote short” of that.

“The amending act can be struck down on this ground, as well as on the grounds of a lack of reasonableness and proportionality within the meaning of Section 13 of the Constitution,” Al-Rawi said, adding the PNM will do all in its power to defend the democracy of the nation.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Michael-j on August 30, 2014, 06:14:54 PM
ILP sues over Runoff Bill (http://www.newsday.co.tt/news/0,199768.html)
By SEAN DOUGLAS Saturday, August 30 2014 (T&T Newsday)

Mere hours after a split Senate passed an amended Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014 — which now reverts to the Lower House to mull the changes — the Independent Liberal Party (ILP) yesterday filed a constitutional motion in the High Court against the measure.


This was disclosed yesterday by Independent Liberal Party ((ILP) deputy political leader, Rekha Ramjit, during a news briefing at the party’s headquarters at Edward Street, Port-of-Spain, attended by party officials including ILP political leader, Lyndira Oudit, and chairman, Jack Warner.

The legal action, according to Ramjit, argues that the bill breaches constitutional rights, as detailed in the affidavits also filed yesterday by two citizens, Sherwin Mitchell and Dane Francois, both ILP members. Mitchell has complained the Bill breaches his constitutional right as an elector, while Francois has alleged the Bill violates his rights as a potential general election candidate.

Although the Bill has not yet reached the stage of presidential assent and so is not yet law, Ramjit said it is the ILP’s position that an aggrieved individual can file a constitutional motion under Section 14(1) of the Constitution which recognises not only instances where rights are violated, but also cases where there is a threat that rights may be abrogated.

“It will soon be served on the Attorney General,” Ramjit said. “It has been docketed to Justice Frank Seepersad, a fearless judge.”

She said Section 4 of the Constitution states rights including freedom of political expression, while Section 5 says no law must infringe those rights, even as section 13 says any infringement can only be done with a three-fifths special majority. Even as section 73 of the Constitution says you elect a Lower House by a first-past-the-post system, Ramjit said the bill amends this to also add a runoff.

She warned however that this new system could create an inequality of treatment in violation of constitutional norms. A third party who wins over 25 percent of votes-cast and/or is within five percent of the second placed rival, may proceed to the second runoff, but not so for a candidate winning under 25 percent at the first ballot. Ramjit contends that all this creates an “inequality of treatment” in breach of the Constitution.

Ramjit said rights can be abrogated but only if you have reasonable justification and the support of a three-fifths parliamentary majority, “not any simple majority as espoused by the Government.”

Oudit said if the People’s National Movement and, or, former attorney general Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj also seek to bring such a motion, the judge would have to decide if to hear all motions together.

Oudit, when asked if they might ask President Anthony Carmona to refuse to assent and proclaim the bill, responded the party would consider writing to ask the President to familiarise himself with the issues around the bill.

Warner said letters are currently being drafted to take the issue to Caricom and the Commonwealth, even as Oudit, having done an interview with the Miami Herald, noted that the issue had gone international.

Oudit said all the public had asked the Government for was some more time to mull the Bill. She said the Government was to be blamed for failing to adequately inform the general population about the bill. Responding to whether the bill represented a United National Congress grab for ILP votes as once suggested by Warner, Oudit said the Bill was designed for the small parties and marginal seats. “What makes a difference in the marginal constituencies is the presence or absence of minority parties,” she said.

Warner quipped, “This is the first election you have to go to listen to the results with a calculator. You can’t have fete or champagne.”

Warner alleged that in last year’s St Joseph bye-election, he had been approached by two Government officials who asked him to withdraw the candidacy of the ILP’s Om Lalla, in exchange for which Lalla would be made Justice Minister and a Senator. “I declined,” related Warner, saying that attempt to accrue the ILP vote-share was the genesis of the current bill to amend the electoral process.

You are right. I was making an attempt to exlain they were still a third party in terms of electorate voting results. In terms of seats it's wrong for me to say they won it as a third party because they combined with the UNC to form a coalition to win seats but they are still a 'third party' backa 'third party' who helped from a coalition but they were still a third party who cause damage in votes. When you look at the final voting tally the numbers speak for themselves. It's easy to see they could have won a seat in a run off situation back then. However today their party is not not even as half strong as it was back then when PNM popularity was low due tontine unpopularity of its political leader.

But I will regress and retract that part of my previous post because it was worded wrong.


Agreed...
At the moment, there exists no viable third party that can realistically challenge the UNC or PNM for power. The passage of this bill is not going to change that. A third party that can succeed in appealing to the masses should be able to fend for itself in a general election.
I'm not sure about the feasibility of this but I think what is needed to promote the growth of third parties is proportional representation at the general election level...a third party might not be able to win outright but if they can manage to secure a substantial number of votes they deserve to be represented in government...this would give them something to build on and it would prevent those who voted for them from feeling disenfranchised....
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 06:19:23 PM


Now if the present government loses the election....

Here is what your party will do...

Quote
“As I stand here tonight we of the PNM say, and I am saying this without fear of contradiction, they could change the rules, they could call elections, they could do what they want, the People’s National Movement will win the next general election,” Robinson-Regis said.

“And Mr Vice-President let me put it on the record that upon winning the next general election if this piece of legislation is passed the People’s National Movement will repeal it right away because Mr Vice-President it is said that this piece of legislation may be an advantage to the incumbent Government, to any incumbent government,” she said.


Now what is the problem ....Rowley is so sure of winning why is the party complaining ...

Dem go win in the East ..dem go win the west , Dem go win the North , deem go win the South ..

You should be happy ... :rotfl: :rotfl:

They are complaining because even though the change could be to the advantage of either major party in the future it is a change that erodes rather than increases democracy for the electorate.

What is good for the healthy survival of democracy in the country is more important than what is beneficial to either of the major political parties and the PNM recognises this unlike the PP government led by the UNC.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 06:25:29 PM


Now if the present government loses the election....

Here is what your party will do...

Quote
“As I stand here tonight we of the PNM say, and I am saying this without fear of contradiction, they could change the rules, they could call elections, they could do what they want, the People’s National Movement will win the next general election,” Robinson-Regis said.

“And Mr Vice-President let me put it on the record that upon winning the next general election if this piece of legislation is passed the People’s National Movement will repeal it right away because Mr Vice-President it is said that this piece of legislation may be an advantage to the incumbent Government, to any incumbent government,” she said.


Now what is the problem ....Rowley is so sure of winning why is the party complaining ...

Dem go win in the East ..dem go win the west , Dem go win the North , deem go win the South ..

You should be happy ... :rotfl: :rotfl:

Wait you think this is just the PNM? There are several groups around the country who reject the bill and requested public consultation on the run off proposal. From the Law Association to MSJ to Futa to canefied workers to groups at UWI. Do you want me to spoon feed you with the internet links my UNC friend? :)
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Ramgoat on August 30, 2014, 07:02:43 PM
 As an outsider ,  these are some if my observations.
 Trinidad has a racial divide that cannot be bridged.
 If the PNM were in power and had  introduced this same legislation it would have been hailed  by their supporters  and the UNC would have protested.   
 The PNM has  been in power for most  of Trinidad independent existence but the lot  of black people  had not improved greatly .
 Trinidad  and most other countries  for that matter only cares that  one  of their kind is in power  and  it  matters not  whether they suffer . 
 Same  for religious divide as in Northern Ireland
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 07:28:45 PM


Now if the present government loses the election....

Here is what your party will do...

Quote
“As I stand here tonight we of the PNM say, and I am saying this without fear of contradiction, they could change the rules, they could call elections, they could do what they want, the People’s National Movement will win the next general election,” Robinson-Regis said.

“And Mr Vice-President let me put it on the record that upon winning the next general election if this piece of legislation is passed the People’s National Movement will repeal it right away because Mr Vice-President it is said that this piece of legislation may be an advantage to the incumbent Government, to any incumbent government,” she said.


Now what is the problem ....Rowley is so sure of winning why is the party complaining ...

Dem go win in the East ..dem go win the west , Dem go win the North , deem go win the South ..

You should be happy ... :rotfl: :rotfl:

Wait you think this is just the PNM? There are several groups around the country who reject the bill and requested public consultation on the run off proposal. From the Law Association to MSJ to Futa to canefied workers to groups at UWI. Do you want me to spoon feed you with the internet links my UNC friend? :)


hahahaha..

I am not UNC nor PNM or any party in T&T ..

Just an expatriate , looking in from outside  ..

Watching with interest... :rotfl:
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 30, 2014, 07:42:31 PM
‘Bill will benefit one and all’
By port of spain \\\\\ Michelle Loubon
Story Created: Aug 29, 2014 at 10:42 PM ECT
Express


Religious leaders yesterday shared their views on the controversial Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014, which was passed on Thursday night in the Senate.

Among them were:

Bishop Claude Berkley

He said: “I have been out of the island for most of the year. What the bill has done was raise the level of political consciousness, which is good for the country.
“I would think some aspects require time and more discussion among the interest groups before we finally sign off on it—especially the run-off. I think more analysis is required. We are a unique place and that evolution must be guided by the people’s consideration. It requires a lot more time to deliberate on it .

President of the Inter-Religious Organisation (IRO) Harrypersad Maharaj

He said: “I think people are reluctant to embrace change, irrespective of what kind of change. People live in fear and doubt. We have become a bit more mature in what we do. I think this bill is for positive change and development as an independent nation. Fifty-two years ago, it was a different situation. And a lot has changed from then to now. And I think it is important to bring about these changes for the benefit of everyone.”
He added: “I want to compli­ment the PM (Kamla Per­sad-Bissessar) for the courage and stance she has taken to bring forth this long-awaited amendment that we need to the Constitution. She had even put her own political future at stake. That is the circumstance of the change. It has been a truly selfless and courageous act.”
Maharaj said: “I think it is definitely for the benefit of one and all. I see it as an Independence gift in the right direction. Let us all embrace change and look at new initiatives for which we can go forward as an independent nation. It is a laudable thing.”

Catholic Archbishop Fr Joseph Harris

People voted on the bill. It was passed. Let us work with it. If we have something that was voted on when it becomes law. It is not law yet. If after working with it and the population finds it is not worthwhile, then we will change it. I am not a politician. I am not getting into that.
“My task is to get people to live moral and ethical lives. If it is bringing problems, it will be changed.”

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 07:57:55 PM
As an outsider ,  these are some if my observations.
 Trinidad has a racial divide that cannot be bridged.
 If the PNM were in power and had  introduced this same legislation it would have been hailed  by their supporters  and the UNC would have protested.   
 The PNM has  been in power for most  of Trinidad independent existence but the lot  of black people  had not improved greatly .
 Trinidad  and most other countries  for that matter only cares that  one  of their kind is in power  and  it  matters not  whether they suffer . 
 Same  for religious divide as in Northern Ireland

You say Trinidad has a racial divide that cannot be bridged but I put it to you that Trinidad has more racial harmony that most other places despite the current PP government doing their best to turn T&T into a smaller version of Guyana.

You say if the PNM were in power and had  introduced this same legislation it would have been hailed  by their supporters and the UNC would have protested.   
And I say in reality the PNM seems to have a lot more respect for our constitution than the UNC has hence why they plan to reverse the change if it goes thru and they win the next elections despite the UNC shameless plans to steal the next elections.
Quote
“And Mr Vice-President let me put it on the record that upon winning the next general election if this piece of legislation is passed the People’s National Movement will repeal it right away because Mr Vice-President it is said that this piece of legislation may be an advantage to the incumbent Government, to any incumbent government,” she said.

You say that the PNM has  been in power for most  of Trinidad independent existence but the lot  of black people had not improved greatly.
I would say that is correct because the PNM is a party that in practice looks after most of the races equally but many Afro Trinis haven't taken full advantage of the opportunities they have had for advancement under the PNM.

You say Trinidad and most other countries for that matter only cares that one of their kind is in power and it matters not  whether they suffer and I say to that you are wrong in T&T's case otherwise so many Afro Trini PNM supporters would not have shifted and voted for Kamla and her PP government in the 2010 elections including members of my family who fell for the false promises of better governance, reduction in crime in 120 days, etc.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 08:16:11 PM
‘Bill will benefit one and all’
By port of spain \\\\\ Michelle Loubon
Story Created: Aug 29, 2014 at 10:42 PM ECT
Express


Religious leaders yesterday shared their views on the controversial Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014, which was passed on Thursday night in the Senate.

Among them were:

Bishop Claude Berkley

He said: “I have been out of the island for most of the year. What the bill has done was raise the level of political consciousness, which is good for the country.
“I would think some aspects require time and more discussion among the interest groups before we finally sign off on it—especially the run-off. I think more analysis is required. We are a unique place and that evolution must be guided by the people’s consideration. It requires a lot more time to deliberate on it .

President of the Inter-Religious Organisation (IRO) Harrypersad Maharaj

He said: “I think people are reluctant to embrace change, irrespective of what kind of change. People live in fear and doubt. We have become a bit more mature in what we do. I think this bill is for positive change and development as an independent nation. Fifty-two years ago, it was a different situation. And a lot has changed from then to now. And I think it is important to bring about these changes for the benefit of everyone.”
He added: “I want to compli­ment the PM (Kamla Per­sad-Bissessar) for the courage and stance she has taken to bring forth this long-awaited amendment that we need to the Constitution. She had even put her own political future at stake. That is the circumstance of the change. It has been a truly selfless and courageous act.”
Maharaj said: “I think it is definitely for the benefit of one and all. I see it as an Independence gift in the right direction. Let us all embrace change and look at new initiatives for which we can go forward as an independent nation. It is a laudable thing.”

Catholic Archbishop Fr Joseph Harris

People voted on the bill. It was passed. Let us work with it. If we have something that was voted on when it becomes law. It is not law yet. If after working with it and the population finds it is not worthwhile, then we will change it. I am not a politician. I am not getting into that.
“My task is to get people to live moral and ethical lives. If it is bringing problems, it will be changed.”

Only naive uneducated people will fall for all that hogwash.

Change for the sake of change when the change in effect amounts to a reduction of democracy in the country is not the kind of change that sensible people who care for T&T remaining a healthy democracy will condone.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 30, 2014, 08:23:40 PM
Wait this shouldn't be a surprise. Everybody saying the SAME thing this man is saying

And to add to this, if you have a second round vote with three candidates you could possibly STILL GET A MINORITY candidate winning the race. Simply because he/she has acquired less than 50% but also less than the combine vote of the other two candidates in the run off poll. So the whole idea of this bill ensuring a majority winning candidate is flawed

Quote

The legislation is silent on this scenario. If the run-off is allowed to take place with only the second-placed person that received less than 25 per cent of the votes cast, then it makes a mockery of the amendment, which speaks to the 25 per cent threshold to show that the third-placed candidate has the potential to win, according to the pseudo logic. In this scenario, a second-placed candidate with 23 per cent is allowed in a run-off while a third-placed candidate in another constituency obtaining, say, 24 per cent, can possibly be denied, having not achieved the 25 per cent threshold.

The new process is no longer a run-off, but more of a re-run of the election, under different rules.
First, the threshold of more than 50 per cent to win in the second round is no longer valid. In addition the 25 per cent threshold for the third-placed contender may also be invalid if both the second-placed candidate falls below 25 per cent and the winner below 50 per cent.


 http://www.trinidadexpress.com/letters/Run-off-amendment-sets-stage-for-confusion-273260241.html

Title: Run-off amendment sets stage for confusion
Post by: Socapro on August 30, 2014, 08:51:12 PM
Run-off amendment sets stage for confusion (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/letters/Run-off-amendment-sets-stage-for-confusion-273260241.html)
Story Created: Aug 29, 2014 at 8:29 PM ECT (T&T Express)


The controversial re-run/run-off amendment is mathematically misleading and problematic.

Dr Mahabir proposed that a third-placed candidate in an election who gains 25 per cent of the votes and who is within a margin of not less than five percentage points of the second-placed candidate, also be allowed to contest the run-off election.

There is the possibility that the second- and third-placed candidates in an election may both fail to get 25 per cent. Let’s say there are five candidates in an election and the person polling the highest gets 49 per cent of the votes, the second 23 per cent, the third 21 per cent, the fourth three per cent, and the fifth two per cent, totalling ten per cent of the persons who voted. Both the second-placed candidate and the third-placed candidate have not received the prerequisite 25 per cent and the winner has not crossed the 50 per cent threshold. So can there still be a run-off?

The legislation is silent on this scenario. If the run-off is allowed to take place with only the second-placed person that received less than 25 per cent of the votes cast, then it makes a mockery of the amendment, which speaks to the 25 per cent threshold to show that the third-placed candidate has the potential to win, according to the pseudo logic. In this scenario, a second-placed candidate with 23 per cent is allowed in a run-off while a third-placed candidate in another constituency obtaining, say, 24 per cent, can possibly be denied, having not achieved the 25 per cent threshold.

The new process is no longer a run-off, but more of a re-run of the election, under different rules. First, the threshold of more than 50 per cent to win in the second round is no longer valid. In addition the 25 per cent threshold for the third-placed contender may also be invalid if both the second-placed candidate falls below 25 per cent and the winner below 50 per cent.

From both a mathematical and process perspective the run-off as amended poses more difficulty and confusion than the initial proposal.

I am therefore recommending that this amendment be revisited during the next sitting of Parliament.

Adrian Clarke

Woodbrook
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Michael-j on August 31, 2014, 04:46:15 AM
Wait this shouldn't be a surprise. Everybody saying the SAME thing this man is saying

And to add to this, if you have a second round vote with three candidates you could possibly STILL GET A MINORITY candidate winning the race. Simply because he/she has acquired less than 50% but also less than the combine vote of the other two candidates in the run off poll. So the whole idea of this bill ensuring a majority winning candidate is flawed


This is correct! Allowing a minority candidate to be elected in the second rounds defeats the proposed purpose of the bill itself- to elect a majority candidate! If you're allowing election of a minority candidate in the second round of a three-way run-off why dismiss the result of the first round where the result was most likely the same?  Al Rawi posed this question to Mahabir but he , with his condescending self, refused to answer.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on August 31, 2014, 05:50:09 AM
Wait this shouldn't be a surprise. Everybody saying the SAME thing this man is saying

And to add to this, if you have a second round vote with three candidates you could possibly STILL GET A MINORITY candidate winning the race. Simply because he/she has acquired less than 50% but also less than the combine vote of the other two candidates in the run off poll. So the whole idea of this bill ensuring a majority winning candidate is flawed


This is correct! Allowing a minority candidate to be elected in the second rounds defeats the proposed purpose of the bill itself- to elect a majority candidate! If you're allowing election of a minority candidate in the second round of a three-way run-off why dismiss the result of the first round where the result was most likely the same?  Al Rawi posed this question to Mahabir but he , with his condescending self, refused to answer.


Folks we are getting into hypothetical situation here that may or may not occur ...

I found this posted as the best example ...

Lets use the 2007 election for St. Augustine between the PNM, UNC and COP ...

Winston Dookeran lost to Vassant Barath by 600 votes...

In a run-off 15 days later ...

3000 PNM votes up for grabs in the run-off between Vassantt and Dooks ...

who do you think would have won ?


Would it be so horrible that the COP got 1 seat in parliament for the 20% of the national vote they received ?

Well if you are a PNM till you dead it would be HORRIBLE ..

because Chaguanas West which was won by the PNM in a 3 way split between the UNC , COP and PNM ....

would have been easily won by the UNC in the run-off ....

 Is this why the PNM is against the run-off system ???...

Interesting isn't it ...
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on August 31, 2014, 08:36:19 AM
Wait this shouldn't be a surprise. Everybody saying the SAME thing this man is saying

And to add to this, if you have a second round vote with three candidates you could possibly STILL GET A MINORITY candidate winning the race. Simply because he/she has acquired less than 50% but also less than the combine vote of the other two candidates in the run off poll. So the whole idea of this bill ensuring a majority winning candidate is flawed


This is correct! Allowing a minority candidate to be elected in the second rounds defeats the proposed purpose of the bill itself- to elect a majority candidate! If you're allowing election of a minority candidate in the second round of a three-way run-off why dismiss the result of the first round where the result was most likely the same?  Al Rawi posed this question to Mahabir but he , with his condescending self, refused to answer.

The more you think about possible scenarios this bill may cause is the more you realise that the government has passed this bill without thinking all possible scenarios it may cause thru properly or has another agenda which is to give themselves more time in power and the opportunity to buy voters in marginals.
They are not really interested in increasing democracy as they are touting but simply in trying to stay in power by any means necessary.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on August 31, 2014, 02:14:58 PM


ILP files constitutional motion: ‘Citizens’ rights breached’ (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/ILP-files-constitutional-motion-Citizens-rights-breached-273270601.html)
By Kejan Haynes Multimedia Reporter (T&T Express)
Story Created:    Aug 29, 2014 at 10:33 PM ECT


The Independent Liberal Party (ILP) is now the first group to take the Government to court over the controversial Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014. The bill was passed in the Senate on Thursday night after three days of debate.


Response to ILP Motion

http://www.tv6tnt.com/sevenpm-news/Response-to-ILP-Motion-273340701.html
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Bourbon on August 31, 2014, 04:48:04 PM
Question though.

If First Past the Post is so bad....and depriving people of a voice in Parliament....then why employ the First Past the Post for the run off?
Shouldnt the run off have a run off...especially if it results in three candidates in the first run off?


As I said before....there are about 9 seats which are considered marginal which could go either which way. The UNC basically have their 12 or so that they sure to retain. With this run-off...and then the added time for recount etc.....a government could potentially be in office more than a month after the election if any aspect of the system decides to be truculent.


The slipshod drafting of this will cause comess. Wait and see.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: lefty on August 31, 2014, 06:52:17 PM
Question though.

If First Past the Post is so bad....and depriving people of a voice in Parliament....then why employ the First Past the Post for the run off?
Shouldnt the run off have a run off...especially if it results in three candidates in the first run off?


As I said before....there are about 9 seats which are considered marginal which could go either which way. The UNC basically have their 12 or so that they sure to retain. With this run-off...and then the added time for recount etc.....a government could potentially be in office more than a month after the election if any aspect of the system decides to be truculent.


The slipshod drafting of this will cause comess. Wait and see.

daiz what does happen when narrow agenda of power retention trumps good sense 
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Bourbon on September 01, 2014, 12:04:28 AM
Some might say it a tad overdue...but....According to BM


HE SPEAKS!!!!! (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/GROWING----PAINS-273417671.html)


Quote
President Anthony Carmona has weighed in on the controversial Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014, saying yesterday that “forays” into reform were to be expected from a young nation, but there was no room for “bull-headed partisanship”.

Carmona said the constitutional reform exercise must be done transparently as he stressed his own role in the process.

He reminded the population that he was not a “former politician” but a former judge who seeks counsel.

The President broke with tradition this year, choosing to address the nation in a toast yesterday, Independence Day, rather than issue a statement on the eve of the occasion.

With Independence Day falling just three days after the passage in the Senate of the contentious Bill, Carmona stated: “As a relatively young independent nation, we will experience growing pains.

“There will be lessons to learn. Our recent forays into constitutional reform are to be expected.

“These attempts to refresh the foundation of our nationhood must, however, be conducted in an atmosphere that is transparent, well-informed, inclusive, tolerant and driven by critical analysis. In this exercise there is no room for blasé statements and bull-headed partisanship,” he added.

“Change is the only constant and to turn one’s back and pretend that it is not coming is an exercise in futility. “Actively engaging in the discourse and discussion is the right of every citizen and the responsibility of every elected and appointed representative.”

Carmona also sent a message about the role of the President in the reform process.

“It is not lost on the Office of The President the role that the Head of State must play in constitutional reform concomitant with constitutional restraints and neutrality.”

He added: “The national community would do well to remember that the current Head of State is not a former politician but a former judge who seeks counsel.”

Government’s Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014--which was piloted by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar in the Senate last Tuesday, the first time a PM has done so in the Upper House--has received criticism from several quarters.

Three provisions of the Bill have drew debate and criticism--a two-term limit for prime ministers; right of recall of MPs; and an election run-off clause that anti-Bill activists contend was foisted on the population without consultation.

Consultations on reform had been carried out by the Constitutional Reform Commission (CRC), headed by Legal Affairs Minister Prakash Ramadhar, but former CRC member, Dr Merle Hodge, claimed that the run-off clause was not discussed.

The Bill was passed with amendments in the Senate on Thursday night with a vote of 18 for and 12 against.

Independent Senators Dr Rolph Balgobin, Dr Dhanayshar Mahabir and David Small supported the Bill.

It required the support of one Independent.



Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on September 01, 2014, 12:28:13 PM
Some might say it a tad overdue...but....According to BM


HE SPEAKS!!!!! (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/GROWING----PAINS-273417671.html)


Quote
President Anthony Carmona has weighed in on the controversial Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014, saying yesterday that “forays” into reform were to be expected from a young nation, but there was no room for “bull-headed partisanship”.

Carmona said the constitutional reform exercise must be done transparently as he stressed his own role in the process.

He reminded the population that he was not a “former politician” but a former judge who seeks counsel.

The President broke with tradition this year, choosing to address the nation in a toast yesterday, Independence Day, rather than issue a statement on the eve of the occasion.

With Independence Day falling just three days after the passage in the Senate of the contentious Bill, Carmona stated: “As a relatively young independent nation, we will experience growing pains.

“There will be lessons to learn. Our recent forays into constitutional reform are to be expected.

“These attempts to refresh the foundation of our nationhood must, however, be conducted in an atmosphere that is transparent, well-informed, inclusive, tolerant and driven by critical analysis. In this exercise there is no room for blasé statements and bull-headed partisanship,” he added.

“Change is the only constant and to turn one’s back and pretend that it is not coming is an exercise in futility. “Actively engaging in the discourse and discussion is the right of every citizen and the responsibility of every elected and appointed representative.”

Carmona also sent a message about the role of the President in the reform process.

“It is not lost on the Office of The President the role that the Head of State must play in constitutional reform concomitant with constitutional restraints and neutrality.”

He added: “The national community would do well to remember that the current Head of State is not a former politician but a former judge who seeks counsel.”

Government’s Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014--which was piloted by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar in the Senate last Tuesday, the first time a PM has done so in the Upper House--has received criticism from several quarters.

Three provisions of the Bill have drew debate and criticism--a two-term limit for prime ministers; right of recall of MPs; and an election run-off clause that anti-Bill activists contend was foisted on the population without consultation.

Consultations on reform had been carried out by the Constitutional Reform Commission (CRC), headed by Legal Affairs Minister Prakash Ramadhar, but former CRC member, Dr Merle Hodge, claimed that the run-off clause was not discussed.

The Bill was passed with amendments in the Senate on Thursday night with a vote of 18 for and 12 against.

Independent Senators Dr Rolph Balgobin, Dr Dhanayshar Mahabir and David Small supported the Bill.

It required the support of one Independent.


Exactly what you with expect from a puppet President who is just there to sign whatever the government gives him to sign without consideration for if it erodes democracy and increases the opportunity for corruption.

A useful Constitution reform will be allowing the T&T electorate to vote for who they would like as their President after the government and opposition MP's have nominated who they view as the best candidates for the job.
Title: BE TOLERANT
Post by: Socapro on September 01, 2014, 12:42:04 PM
Listen again to our puppet President trying to tell the T&T public on Independence Day to be tolerant of the undemocratic tampering with the elections voting system by the PP government.

BE TOLERANT (http://www.newsday.co.tt/news/0,199855.html)
By Andre Bagoo Monday, September 1 2014 (T&T Newsday)

PRESIDENT Anthony Carmona yesterday said Constitution reform is to be expected as “change is the only constant” but said the process of reform must be “transparent, well-informed, inclusive, tolerant and driven by critical analysis” and there was no room for “bull-headed partisanship”.


The President deviated from normal practise of issuing an Independence Day speech one day in advance, in favour of making his broad remarks at the annual Toast to the Nation, hosted by the Combined Officers of the Defence Force, at the western section of the National Academy for the Performing Art, in Port-of-Spain, at about 11.45 am.

This was one of several events traditionally held after the Independence Day Parade earlier in the day at the Queen’s Park Savannah. They include functions hosted by the Acting Commissioner of Police at the Police Administrative Building, on Edward Street, and by the Fire Chief at Fire Headquarters on Wrighston Road, Port-of-Spain.

Persons who would normally be in attendance at the event include: the Prime Minister, the Chief Justice, Members of Parliament and senior officers of the protective services and Ministry of National Security.

On the issue of Constitution reform, Carmona said, “As a relatively young Independent nation, we will experience growing pains. There will be lessons to learn. Our recent forays into constitutional reform are to be expected.”

He called for an atmosphere of transparency in relation to reform, but also appeared to criticise partisan interests on the issue.

“These attempts to refresh the foundation of our nationhood must however be conducted in an atmosphere that is transparent, well-informed, inclusive, tolerant and driven by critical analysis,” Carmona said. “In this exercise there is no room for blasé statements and bull-headed partisanship. Change is the only constant and to turn one’s back and pretend that it is not coming is an exercise in futility.”

The President said his role in the process was influenced by “constitutional restraints and neutrality.”

“Actively engaging in the discourse and discussion is the right of every citizen and the responsibility of every elected and appointed representative,” Carmona said. “It is not lost on the Office of The President the role that the Head of State must play in constitutional reform concomitant with constitutional restraints and neutrality. The national community would do well to remember that the current Head of State is not a former politician but a former Judge who seeks counsel.”

The President’s remarks came days after the Senate passed the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014. The legislation was passed in the Senate with amendments and therefore is due to return to the House of Representatives for final approval before being sent to President’s House for assent. Even after assent, the legislation has to be proclaimed by the President, acting in accordance with the advice of Cabinet. But none of this is due to take place at least until after the conclusion of the Budget process which starts on September 8 and could well stretch into the final weeks of that month.

The President was silent on the specific question of assent of bills.

Carmona yesterday noted he had deviated from tradition in not releasing an address to the nation and choosing, instead, to deliver his remarks at the Toast to the Nation.

“It is traditional for the Office of The President to release a message to commemorate Independence the day before,” Carmona said, according to notes of his speech released by the Office of the President. “But this year I felt the need to change that dynamic and what better way to do so than to address the nation at the toast to celebrate our 52nd birthday.”

Carmona also commented on the structure of the nation’s economy, particularly the issue of productivity.

“Let us be brutally frank on the issue of the national largesse and patrimony,” the President said. “Our dependency levels on the public purse in all sectors of our society are unparalleled. In this almost institutionalised age of entitlement in our history where dependency is the jockey riding the economy, where productivity levels continue to wane and we lose our competitive edge as reflected in our low placing on the world competitiveness index, we must as a nation take stock and become a wise custodian of our national purse.”

Carmona said the dependence on oil and natural gas must change.

“As much as with increased exploration new gas reserves can be found, what must be obvious to all is that our oil and gas reserves are not renewable and they are diminishing, and to protect the generations to come, we must engage in nothing short of a radical shift in the diversification of the economy,” the President said. This comment follows last week’s Ryder Scott report that gas reserves had declined by seven percent.

“The proverbial horse has not yet bolted. We have done well financially but we cannot, and must not sit on our laurels. Our traditional oil and gas philosophy does not have conservation as a crucial component and we can ill afford to continue to spend billions of dollars which are not reflected in the improved human capital of our country,” Carmona said.

The President contrasted petrochemical revenues with levels of crime and unemployment, though he did not give figures.

“We continue to challenge established sociological doctrine which establishes links between poverty and crime, unemployment and a low GDP,” Carmona said. “We have low unemployment and one of the highest GDPs in our region, yet still we have poverty, crime and lifestyle diseases rampant in our communities.” He further stated, “I am convinced that we can turn this around because our greatest resource is not oil and gas but remains our human resource.”

The President also issued a call for unity.

“Let us put aside our petty differences and work together on the road to becoming true patriots in deed and action, and not just in name,” Carmona said. “Happy Birthday Trinidad and Tobago. Happy Independence to all.”
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 01, 2014, 12:59:51 PM
^^ Socapro dais de same Independence speech from the President posted by Bourbon?
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on September 01, 2014, 01:29:28 PM
^^ Socapro dais de same Independence speech from the President posted by Bourbon?

Yes but its from the government's newspaper the Newsday so was presented by them with a pro government stance designed to make the government look principled and good.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Ramgoat on September 01, 2014, 07:33:47 PM
The first 2 amendments are great for democracy .The third one not so much.
 The one about recall  would have decimated this present govt has this been in force now
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: socafighter on September 01, 2014, 07:48:59 PM
The first 2 amendments are great for democracy .The third one not so much.
 The one about recall  would have decimated this present govt has this been in force now

Please how can it ...
I explained what would have happened in two ridings in the last election  above..
It would not have changed a UNC win.

We have two major parties , that have solid support . About 10 % are swing voters and
vote according to which party they are angry at ...
The minnow parties have no chance for a seat not even Jack Warner in the next election.
The end result will be a two horse race ....

Thanks krishna ,,for visiting this site.... :rotfl: :rotfl:
You should bring ketchim with you...

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 01, 2014, 09:28:44 PM

The voice of the people is the voice of God. Losing the faith and the trust of the people has its consequences.

Quote

I followed much of the debates in the Parliament on the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014 and have concluded that the outcome, from the standpoint of the People’s Partnership, can be described only as “pyrrhic’’ , i.e. “a victory costing more to the victor than to the vanquished”.

The bill and the outcome of the debates were witnessed by some unnecessary “blood-letting” and “naked politicking” on a matter so serious as to be dictating the manner of governance of this country. Reputation of members was none the better.


http://www.trinidadexpress.com/letters/A-victory-for-the-vanquished-273415681.html
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 01, 2014, 09:32:58 PM
I said before the people will have the last say. What can be voted in as a simple majority can also be removed easily by a simple majority.

Quote


Never backward to come forward, Trinbagonians are demonstrably even more politically and constitutionally savvy nowadays, so any government perceived to be unwilling to listen to the chorus of concerns on any issue they consider to be of critical importance will be sure to feel. At any rate, political prudence should warn against future chaos, in that what is done by a simple majority may soon be trumped.

http://www.trinidadexpress.com/letters/Beware-the-voice-of-God-273495781.html

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: weary1969 on September 01, 2014, 10:11:23 PM
All I need 4 d scholars to tell me how it needed a special majority 2 pass d Dog bill but a simple majority 2 change d constitution.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Bourbon on September 02, 2014, 12:55:06 AM
This law is for sheep. Four legs good, two legs better.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on September 02, 2014, 09:09:42 PM
Interesting discussion on The Street 91.9FM going on right now about the Constitution Amendment Bill 2014.

Tune in: http://www.thestreet919fm.com/ or http://tunein.com/radio/The-Street-919-s88618/
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 02, 2014, 09:42:53 PM

See how serious the ILP is about taking this bill to court. The PNM and MSJ only talking and considering and waiting BUT the ILP doing!

http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/Jack-Court-battle-on-run-off-has-begun-273680401.html
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 02, 2014, 10:01:00 PM
Interesting discussion on The Street 91.9FM going on right now about the Constitution Amendment Bill 2014.

Tune in: http://www.thestreet919fm.com/ or http://tunein.com/radio/The-Street-919-s88618/

I endorse the commentator who is saying God put religious leaders to echo the cries of the people instead of being passive
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on September 02, 2014, 10:04:55 PM
Interesting discussion on The Street 91.9FM going on right now about the Constitution Amendment Bill 2014.

Tune in: http://www.thestreet919fm.com/ or http://tunein.com/radio/The-Street-919-s88618/

I endorse the commentator who is saying God put religious leaders to echo the cries of the people instead of being passive
:beermug:
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 03, 2014, 12:20:23 PM
Wait this shouldn't be a surprise. Everybody saying the SAME thing this man is saying

And to add to this, if you have a second round vote with three candidates you could possibly STILL GET A MINORITY candidate winning the race. Simply because he/she has acquired less than 50% but also less than the combine vote of the other two candidates in the run off poll. So the whole idea of this bill ensuring a majority winning candidate is flawed


This is correct! Allowing a minority candidate to be elected in the second rounds defeats the proposed purpose of the bill itself- to elect a majority candidate! If you're allowing election of a minority candidate in the second round of a three-way run-off why dismiss the result of the first round where the result was most likely the same?  Al Rawi posed this question to Mahabir but he , with his condescending self, refused to answer.


Are you surprised citizens now want him removed from the Senate?

Fixin TnT wants Mahabir fired

Fixin TnT and other interest groups against the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2014 intend to call on President Anthony Carmona and the Government to revoke the appointment of Independent Senator Dr Dhanayshar Mahabir. This was the word from Fixin TnT head Kirk Waithe yesterday as he outlined the next step in the plan of action for the protesters who are saying even though the bill was passed their fight is far from over.

“In fact, it (the fight against it) has only just begun,” said Waithe. Apart from Fixin TnT, the People’s National Movement (PNM), Movement for Social Justice (MSJ), Independent Liberal Party (ILP) and a number of individuals, including former member of the Constitution Reform Commission Dr Merle Hodge and Attilah Springer, have been staging protest demonstrations outside Parliament since the bill went to the Lower House last month.

http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2014-09-03/fixin-tnt-wants-mahabir-fired
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 05, 2014, 10:23:28 PM


The poster of this youtube video claims Rowley lose his cool during an interview on CNC3
:D  In my opinion he did a good job of reminding her of her duty as a Journalist. 

https://www.youtube.com/v/o7WK7S9m-po
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: zuluwarrior on September 05, 2014, 11:47:02 PM
Could the email gate be  the reason why the rush to get this bill past so quickly  ?
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Socapro on September 06, 2014, 04:34:32 PM


The poster of this youtube video claims Rowley lose his cool during an interview on CNC3
:D  In my opinion he did a good job of reminding her of her duty as a Journalist. 

https://www.youtube.com/v/o7WK7S9m-po


The standard of many of these journalists in T&T is very low.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: MEP on September 07, 2014, 05:00:19 PM
Just based on that little clip it seems as if that journalist, if we can used that word. is bent on eliciting a reaction from Rowley. It's an overall lack of professionalism rather than ask critical questions that would lead to Rowley's opinion she is relying on hearsay.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 08, 2014, 12:47:51 PM
Big talk, I hope this really happens

Quote
Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley gave an undertaking that a PNM Government would repeal the Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014 and go to the public for proper consultation on Constitution reform.

“That matter would come back to the public eventually because it requires public attention. You don’t change your election system as part of the election strategy for the incumbent party,” he said.

http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/Rowley-A-PNM-Govt-would-repeal-bill-274183021.html?utm_content=buffera67fd&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/Rowley-A-PNM-Govt-would-repeal-bill-274183021.html?utm_content=buffera67fd&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer) 

Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Bourbon on September 08, 2014, 02:14:12 PM
Yuh know something?


I was suspecting that might happen....but I dunno if its me being cynical, but it seeming likely even more now.

I saw an article where the PM said that elections will be held when they constitutionally due...and they not due until next year September.
So what happens in the event of recount/run-off and all the rigmarole if September 30th comes...and the fiscal year ends?
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 12, 2014, 08:59:00 AM
Yuh know something?


I was suspecting that might happen....but I dunno if its me being cynical, but it seeming likely even more now.

I saw an article where the PM said that elections will be held when they constitutionally due...and they not due until next year September.
So what happens in the event of recount/run-off and all the rigmarole if September 30th comes...and the fiscal year ends?

I will bet she will call elections before September next year. Simply because an election win will prove to the members in the PP party who don't agree with her decision making that the people support her as PM. 

However I don't see an election win at the moment. Ah see the same licks dey get in local elections happening again.
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 13, 2014, 07:48:31 PM
This issue will continue to be in headlines. I am happy people are still voicing their concerns.

http://www.tv6tnt.com/home/featured-links/Constitution-Reform-2901---274979871.html (http://www.tv6tnt.com/home/featured-links/Constitution-Reform-2901---274979871.html)
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on September 16, 2014, 06:10:07 PM

I didn't want to create a separate thread for this nonsense. But apparently there was a fist fight at a COP meeting yesterday. These are the men who aspire to be the leaders of T&T  :rotfl:
 
Fist fight at COP meeting

Around lunchtime on Sunday, two party activists had a brief battle outside the meeting room as one accused the other of being a snake. Sources say many in the COP were unhappy about the role of the activist who was called a snake. They accused him of being unfaithful to the party in the past.

http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2014-09-16/fist-fight-cop-meeting
Title: Re: Constitution Amendment Bill 2014 represents erosion of democracy in T&T
Post by: Sando prince on October 06, 2014, 06:45:57 PM
I expected this to happen! I hope when PNM wins the next general election they do as promised and repeal the bill and seek the proper widespread consultations on a new constitution reform that will be reflective of what every different group in society want..


State wins against ILP

Judgment on Constitutional (Amendment) Bill, 2014 challenge

Story Created: Oct 6, 2014 at 8:27 PM ECT
Story Updated: Oct 6, 2014 at 8:27 PM ECT
 Text of the judgment delivered yesterday by Justice Frank Seepersad in the matter brought by the Independent Liberal Party (ILP) against the AG on the Constitutional (Amendment) Bill, 2014. The State won the case.

1. Before the Court for  its determination  is the Defendant’s Notice  of Application filed 16th September, 2014 for an order  striking  out the Claimants’ claims. The issues that arise for determination on the Defendant’s Notice of Application are:
a. Whether  the instant  claim is an abuse of the Court’s process since the Constitution (Amendment)  Bill 2014 (the Bill) is not yet law having not undergone the full parliamentary process and procedure.
b. Whether the claimants have offended provisions of the Civil Proceedings Rules (1998) as amended  by failing to comply with Parts 56.7 (2) and 56.7 (d) of the CPR and whether these procedural breaches impact on the claim before the Court.
c. Whether the Claimants have demonstrated adequate locus standi so as to enable them to seek the reliefs claimed.
d. Whether the declaratory relief sought is appropriate in this matter and whether reliefs (4) and (c) in the amended fixed date claim form, are claims based in judicial review and required leave of the Court, before they could have been made.

Determination of the issues

Issue (a)

http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/State-wins-against-ILP-278314941.html (http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/State-wins-against-ILP-278314941.html)