Tuesday, January 23, 2018

JSC meeting cancelled: PNM members absent

THE ABSENCE of all Opposition members from the Joint Select Committee (JSC) yesterday caused the meeting, aimed at examining the Police Complaints Authority (PCA), to be cancelled.

The 28th meeting of the JSC, appointed to enquire into and report to Parliament on Government ministries, statutory authorities and State enterprises (Group I), was scheduled to examine the PCA.

However, because a quorum was not attained the meeting was cancelled. It is to be rescheduled to a later date.

The quorum for the JSC Group I is five members with at least one from the Government, one from the Opposition, one from each House, with either the chairman or vice-chairman being present.

None of the three Opposition members of the JSC (Group I)—Patricia McIntosh, Dr Amery Browne and Faris Al Rawi—were present yesterday. 

McIntosh, Member of Parliament for Port of Spain North/St Ann’s West, and Browne, MP for Diego Martin Central, are representatives from the Lower House, while Al Rawi is an Opposition Senator and a member of the Upper House.

The meeting was originally scheduled to be held at 10 a.m. at the J Hamilton Maurice Room, Office of the Parliament, Tower D, International Waterfront Centre, Port of Spain.

Present were the JSC (Group I) chairman Independent Senator Elton Prescott, SC; Independent Senator Dr Dhanayshar Mahabir; Government Senator Emmanuel George; and Government MPs Carolyn Seepersad-Bachan; Stacy Roopnarine and Jairam Seemungal.

PCA director Gillian Lucky and members of her team were also in attendance.

A Parliamentary source stated that the trio of Opposition members all had reasonable excuses for their absence.

The Express confirmed that McIntosh was out of the country. Both she and Browne were absent from yesterday’s sitting of the House of Representatives.

Attempts to contact Browne and Al Rawi proved futile.

The JSC (Group I) meeting to examine the PCA was postponed to a later date.

April 22 has been temporarily scheduled as the date that it will be held.