No LG reform before polls

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Trinidad and Tobago is heading to yet another local government election without the promised reforms.

In its 2015 general election manifesto, the ruling People’s National Movement (PNM) promised a makeover of the sector.

There were several public consultations.

Yet, Prime Minister Dr. Keith Rowley is set to name the election date without the legislative reforms.

Local Government Minister Franklyn Khan has indicated to Parliament that the reform package would not be implemented before the forthcoming polls.

The PNM had promised to give the local government sector more authority, including a separate constabulary.

The party vowed to “amend the Municipal Corporation Act to give local government corporations a level of autonomy similar to what is now enjoyed by the Tobago House of Assembly.”

In the 1990s, the local government polls were postponed on three occasions by then-Prime Minister Patrick Manning with promises of reforms.

That transformation eventually never took place under Manning’s national leadership.

The first local government poll in a decade was held in October 2010.

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