Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 5th 2013 Contents A8
Sunday Guardian www.guardian.co.tt May 5, 2013
A 30-year-old firefighter and
his father are among five people
arrested during a police exercise
in the Tabaquite area on Friday
Both father and son were
charged with refusing to take
breathalyser tests and failing to
produce their driver s permits.
The exercise, headed by Cpl
Kubir, included PC Vilafana, PC
Ramlochan and WPC Briggs, took
place between 10 pm and mid-
night. The police were travelling
along Caparo Main Road when
they saw a car exiting a bar.
They stopped the car after
observing that the driver was driv-
ing in a dangerous manner.
When they approached the dri-
ver s side of the car, the officers
noticed that the firefighter s eyes
were bloodshot, his speech was
slurred and had a strong scent of
alcohol on his breath.
His father, 56, was seated in the
passenger seat and he also
The driver refused to do the
breathalyser test when asked to by
the police, who then arrested him.
They warned his father not to
drive the car and advised that he
call someone to pick him up.
He called his wife. However,
about five minutes later, the father
pulled up in front the station driv-
ing another car.
The father refused, upon the
officer s request, to take a breathal-
Both of Chickland Road, Caparo,
the father and son will appear
before a Chaguanas magistrate
In another incident, police
arrested a Wasa employee after he
was found drunk and slumped
behind his steering wheel.
Police observed the car idling
on Brasso Road with music playing
and lights on. Several attempts
were reportedly made to wake up
the man before he eventually he
opened his eyes. Police said his
speech was slurred and he smelled
The breathalyser test revealed a
reading of 74 microgrammes which
is more than twice the legal limit.
Another person, 29, also of
Chickland was charged for
obstructing PC Vilafana in the exe-
cution of his duties.
The fifth man, a businessman,
was arrested after police responded
to a report from his family that he
had been threatening them.
When the police walked across
to the house, opposite the police
station, the man used insulting
language to the police and was
Planning Minister Dr Bhoe
Tewarie says the National Spatial
Development Strategy (NSDS) Bill
will go before the Legislative
Review Committee tomorrow.
He also said the proposed max-
imum height for buildings in Port-
of-Spain and San Fernando would
be 20 stories because the building
code was inadequate.
Tewarie made these comments
at NSDS Workshop hosted by the
planning ministry at UWI s Learn-
ing Resource Centre, St Augustine,
Among the issues discussed
were traffic, crime, squatting,
housing and environment. The
three options were concentrated,
dispersed and harmonised regional
development. Tewarie said: "The
final version of the bill is going
before the Legislative Review Com-
mittee tomorrow. After, we will
take it to Cabinet providing there
are not any major changes---and
we don t anticipate many. And
once Cabinet agrees, it would be
laid in Parliament."
20 stories high
Zeroing in on density policy,
Tewarie said: "We are allowing for
greater density in construction so
we can have more room, two
buildings in a space where you had
"We are not expanding the foot-
prints, you would not have the
density on land.
"We are revising the height of
buildings and the highest we are
taking it to at this point is 20 sto-
ries in Port-of-Spain and San Fer-
nando. There will be some revision
in other parts, but not as high.
"The reason we do not wish to
go beyond 20 stories is because
we have a simple building code.
We need to have a stronger code
that would help to guide us.
"We don t want to take the risk
without having the building code
in place. There is a building code
committee that is supposed to be
working on that and bringing it to
Tewarie also lamented: "It is a
lawless society. We like to say You
follow the rules, but give me a
There are more than 40 col-
lective agreements at the Indus-
trial Court which cannot be reg-
istered because of errors relating
to maternity benefits.
Industrial Court president Deb-
orah Thomas-Felix said this when
she spoke yesterday at a "Meet
with the Court" symposium under
the theme Rights and Governance,
hosted by the court at the Hyatt
Thomas-Felix said the agree-
ments had been sitting on her desk
and could not be registered due to
the fact that articles which relate
to maternity benefits did not meet
the legal standards.
She pointed out that the Mater-
nity Protection Act was enacted
to protect pregnant employees
rights at work. One area where
collective agreements were faulty
she said, was in not observing a
recent amendment to the act
which entitled employees to an
increase from 13 to 14 weeks leave.
She said there were also other
erosion of rights, particularly as it
related to Section 7 which entitles
an employee to leave of absence
for the purpose of maternity leave,
pay while on leave, and resumption
of duties after pregnancy.
"It appears that there are several
employers who are either ambiva-
lent or unaware of the extent and
nature of protection which the act
affords a pregnant employee...the
resumption of work by an employ-
ee is a right afforded under the
"However, there are several
employers who view the right to
resume work as a managerial deci-
sion and they impose certain con-
straints which the employee must
adhere to before being allowed to
return to work."
She added that "some trade
unions accept these impositions
seemingly oblivious of the workers
Other issues to which the court
takes objection, she said, are with
employers who insist that the
employee makes a request for
leave of absence no later than
three months before the expected
date of confinement, while legally
the act provides for the worker
to inform no later than eight
Thomas-Felix said the act gives
no period for the worker to sub-
mit a medical certificate and the
employer has no right to demand
or stipulate a period. She also
added that pay during maternity
leave was a vested right and it
was legally incorrect to view or
treat it as a loan.
Fireman, dad arrested
after refusing breathalyser
Employers unclear on maternity benefits
Industrial Court president:
Tewarie: 20 stories maximum height for city buildings
BOROUGH DAY HIGHLIGHTS
Traffic backed up for miles on the Southern Main Road, preventing those who
wanted to leave and those who wanted to enter Point Fortin for the Borough
Day J'Ouvert celebrations yesterday. PHOTOS: KRISTIAN DE SILVA
Ole mas was also part of the Point Fortin Borough Day J'Ouvert celebrations
The early morning sun revealed many beautiful faces in the J'Ouvert bands
taking part in the Point Fortin Borough Day celebrations yesterday.
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