No Observers: A Slap in the Face

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By Sue-Ann Wayow

PRIME Minister Dr Keith Rowley’s decision not to have international observers for the local government election is another slap in the face to citizens.

Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar who issued the call for the observers said she was disappointed in Dr Rowley’s refusal.

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“Just as he disrespected the people of our nation by the callous manner in which he attempted to stall the local government elections by a year, Rowley is now again contemptuously disregarding the need to reassure the public that these elections will be free and fair and free from fear. There is no logical reason for Rowley to refuse to allow international election observers,” she said in a press release issued on Wednesday.

She reminded the Prime Minister that  when he was Opposition Leader in 2015, he too made a call for international election observers to which she obliged as Prime Minister, “viewing it as part of my duty to the citizens of our nation.”

Although he has said “no” Persad-Bissessar repeated her call for the observers.

“I again repeat my call for the Government to do the right thing for the people of Trinidad and Tobago and allow international election observers for the incoming local government elections as well as the 2025 general elections,” she said.

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She also referred to the Tobago House of Assembly (THA) election in 2021 in which additional seats were created to break a six-six deadlock with the Progressive Democratic Patriots (PDP).

Persad-Bissessar said, “Given the actions by the Rowley government in the Tobago House of Assembly elections, in which Rowley acted outside the proper process and by his own admission instructed the Elections and Boundaries Commission to create additional seats and have the election redone, means international election observers are desperately needed in Trinidad and Tobago for elections going forward.”


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