Members of the public were yesterday locked out of the Licensing Office on Wrightson Road, Port of Spain, for a second time this week.
Janet Lawrence, a senior citizen who returned to the Licensing Office yesterday, after meeting it closed on Tuesday, expressed her displeasure over the situation at the Government office.
"When I went on Tuesday afternoon there was a sign saying that the office is closed, today August 21. I said OK, they didn't inform people but it's closed, so I left and I returned this morning.
"When I came back this morning I went in and started to do my transaction for my renewal of my driver's permit and I was given a form to go to the doctor. Because I am a senior citizen I have to do a medical, but before you do the medical you have to get a form signed, a picture and a form stamped to take to the doctor. You can't just say you going to the doctor first," she said.
Lawrence said when she returned to the office yesterday she was told that she could not go back in because it was closed and staff were not seeing any more people.
"They just locked everyone out, no word before or anything. Even when I went up to the counter earlier and I saw the clerk she never told me they were going to close off by 10 because although the sign says 12 (midday) they closed at 10 (a.m), and this is the situation with everyone here right now," Lawrence said.
She said there needed to be better communication with the members of the public.
'Whatever the reason we have to abide but don't treat us like that and not inform people by arbitrarily closing and saying you can't come back in," she added.
Pointing to the sign on the door of the office, which stated that the office regretted any inconvenience caused, another citizen, Othmar Mitterhauser, said: "This is not good enough. I took some hours off from work to come here to renew my licence because I assumed that after three hours I would be out of here. Now tomorrow I have to be here again."
Citizen Victor Sturge, who also took time from work yesterday to get a certified copy, described it as a great inconvenience.
"For the longest while they running this place like a parlour," he said.
Another man who was also there to renew his driver's permit asked what he should do if he was stopped by the police.
"They really not easy in this place," he said.
An employee of the Ministry of Works told the Express that the office was closed because of a problem with the air-conditioning unit.
"We were called out yesterday to assess the problem but this unit desperately needs replacing. It is over three decades old — a dinosaur. The problem is a breaker and we have sent for it but because the unit is so old we are not sure we will get the part," he said.
The man said attempting to fix the unit was like trying to make a granny who is 80 or 90 years old young again.
"That is not so easy. This is three decades old," he said.