Public Utilities Minister wants investigation into aborted RIC meeting

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Public Utilities Minister wants investigation into aborted RIC meeting

The Minister of Public Utilities has requested an investigation into the aborted Regulated Industries Commission’s (RIC) public consultation last Wednesday on the proposed T&TEC rate increase.

According to a GML report, Minister Marvin Gonzales has made the request via a letter to Minister of National Security Fitzgerald Hinds.

The request comes after the RIC was forced to abruptly end its consultation at the Centre Pointe Mall, Chaguanas, last Wednesday, due to security concerns, after the crowd threatened to ignite flammable liquid, paraded around a replica a coffin and threatened members of the head table, among other displays of what it (RIC) called “unruly behaviour.”

Gonzales said: “I thought it was necessary, on my part as Minister of Public Utilities, to raise the issue with my colleague, Minister of National Security, and to indicate to him my profound concerns with respect to what is happening at these consultations.”

“The fact that they (consultations) have been hijacked by political operators of the opposition party and on this particular event, the fact that the staff of the RIC, their security has been threatened. I thought it was incumbent on me to ask for an investigation to be conducted so that whoever might be responsible, that the appropriate action can be taken against them.”

Minister Gonzales admitted that the officers should have been “a little bit more robust in how they enforce the law.”

He told the media house that this solidified his view there was an orchestrated attempt to disrupt the proceedings. Gonzales said Hinds promised to speak to the Commissioner of Police on the matter.