Chief Secretary Orville London has reiterated his stance that the process for the granting of internal self government for Tobago should be subsumed with the national consultation on Constitutional Reform for Trinidad and Tobago.
He said in a statement today (Friday 19th April 2013) that he has become even more concerned since receiving correspondence from the Leader of Government Business in the House of Representatives Dr Roodal Moonilal last Friday in response to a letter he had written to the Prime Minister requesting an update on issues discussed with her on February 22 2013.
In his correspondence Dr Moonilal had told London that “this matter first engaged the attention of Cabinet but as you are aware a decision was taken for the Ministry of Legal Affairs to have widespread national consultations on Constitutional Reform, which will include issues involving the constitutional arrangement between Tobago and Trinidad”.
Moonilal further informed London that the public consultations were in progress and “we would urge that all officials of the THA take the opportunity to fully participate, including making submissions to the Constitutional Reform Committee”.
In his statement London said this would amount to a betrayal to the people of Tobago and a complete about face by members of the Central Government who had professed to be ardent advocates for the granting of self government to Tobago in the period before the THA elections.
He argued that the present process which extended over a five-year period involved hundreds of Tobago residents in serious deliberations in over 40 communities and Tobagonians would not accept that all this effort should be sacrificed in this cynical manner.
London has also questioned the credibility of the Tobago Organisation of the People (TOP) whose spokespersons seem to have also abandoned the Tobago self government cause and to even bullying the Prime Minister to opening discussions.