Promptly on Friday evening, The Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago (LATT) negated Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley’s remarks about the subtleties of the Public Health Ordinance 1940 and the arrival to provided officers of the TTPS with power over private get-togethers.
In a media release, LATT said that the new Public Health Ordinance doesn’t give police the option to enter private property. Indeed, the association said to utilize the Ordinance in such a way would be “illegal”.
On Thursday when Rowley declared new COVID-19 limitations he looked to control gatherings in private homes in a bid to diminish the monstrous spikes in Coronavirus cases during last week.
The released stated, “The Ordinance permits the entry on private property only for particular purposes such as inspection, doing sanitary work and so on. The clear intention of the legislation is to allow authorities to enter ‘infected’ premises to inspect, sanitize and do whatever else may be necessary. The Ordinance also seems to circumscribe this power by suggesting its exercise must be endorsed by a Magistrate.”
The Ordinance likewise states, “The Association is of the view that to use the Ordinance in these circumstances to permit entry to private property will be illegal. It opens the door too easily to an abuse of power and breaches of constitutional rights. The militarised face of the TTPS which is the one which regrettably we have come to know over the past few years is not one to be shown to children in their homes and safe spaces and citizens who have been traumatized at multiple levels by this pandemic.”
The LATT has asked all residents to act dependably in the drive to lessen spiraling COVID-19 numbers.
See LATT official release below: