N Touch
Tuesday 20 August 2019
follow us
News

Griffith, Young warn public not to block roads

Commissioner of Police 
Gary Griffith.
Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith.

UPDATE:

COMMISSIONER of Police Gary Griffith and Communications Minister Stuart Young have called on citizens to ignore social media postings which urge drivers to block major roads and intersections this morning as a form of protest against the government.

The post, which originated on WhatsApp and was subsequently reposted on Facebook, said the “shutdown” was an “opportunity to take a stand” against increased fuel prices, taxes, poor governance and “secret deals.”
“We are calling on all concerned citizens to park your vehicle at the strategic locations listed below. Just make your way to the closest location to you and “shutdown”.

However in a statement yesterday, Young said this type of behaviour is “irresponsible and unpatriotic and designed to negatively affect law-abiding citizens.”

“The Government has observed a concerted call on social media by members of the Opposition, and other persons, for members of the public to block roads and intersections. Please do not fall prey to requests to engage in this type of destructive behaviour. The source of the call to create disruptive events is hereby highlighted so that should any persons decide to break the laws of Trinidad and Tobago as they are being called to do, civic-minded citizens will know in advance who has set about to disrupt our twin island state.”

And Griffith, in a media release, said the Police Service is “prepared to enforce the laws which govern this country, in the interest of maintaining law, order, peace and stability.”

He reminded citizens that the blocking of roadways and highways are illegal under the Motor Vehicles and Road Traffic Act, and carries a fine of $600 and three demerit points. People were also cautioned against “communicating and publishing any  statement with a seditious intention.” He said, under the Sedition Act a person found guilty of publishing, selling, offering for sale or distributing any seditious publication is liable to a fine of $3000 and imprisonment for two years.

“Commissioner Griffith is today giving the assurance that police officers will be out in full force and prepared to ensure the free flow of traffic along the nation’s roadways and highways to ensure adherence of laws. Police patrols will be at all locations identified in the social media messages, to ensure the strict adherence to all traffic laws.”

However, former Transport minister Devant Maharaj distanced the Opposition party from the post saying Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar has “never supported any illegal acts against the government.”

“It is therefore ludicrous for Minister Young to suggest that the Opposition has anything to do with this public call driven by frustrated citizens. As a member of the Opposition, at no time has there been any call by the leadership to engage in any unlawful actions.”
In a Facebook post, Maharaj said Young’s statement is “indicative of the inability and the desperation of the Rowley administration to treat with a frustrated public.”

“The Minister of Communications’ release failed to recognise that increasing levels of unemployment, crime, a stagnating economy, and government incompetence has pushed the population to consider desperate acts of civil disobedience. The tone of the minister’s release is reminiscent of a coloniser warning the natives.”

He said Young should instead consider advising the Works and Transport minister to “address the number of potholes and impassable roads that already cause the nation’s roadways to be blocked.”

ORIGINAL STORY:

Communications Minister Stuart Young and Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith have called on the population to ignore social media postings which urge motorists to block major roads and intersections as a form of protest against the government on Monday.

The post, which originated on messaging service WhatsApp and subsequently reposted on Facebook, said the “shutdown” was an “opportunity to take a stand” against increased fuel prices, taxes, poor governance and “secret deals.”

“We are calling on all concerned citizens to park your vehicle at the strategic locations listed below. Just make your way to the closest location to you and "Shutdown".

However in a statement yesterday, Young said this type of behaviour is “irresponsible and unpatriotic and designed to negatively affect law abiding citizens.”

“The Government has observed a concerted call on social media by members of the Opposition, and other persons, for members of the public to block roads and intersection, including major roads and intersections, tomorrow morning, Monday 8 October, 2018.

Please do not fall prey to requests to engage in this type of destructive behaviour. The source of the call to create disruptive events is hereby highlighted so that should any persons decide to break the laws of Trinidad and Tobago as they are being called to do, civic minded citizens will know in advance who has set about to disrupt our twin island state.”

Meanwhile the CoP, in a media release, said the police service is “prepared to enforce the laws which govern this country, in the interest of maintaining law, order, peace and stability.”

Today's Most Popular
Comments

Reply to "Griffith, Young warn public not to block roads"

News