PSA files injunction to halt Revenue Authority

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

PSA President Leroy Baptiste – File Photo – SUREASH CHOLAI

THE Public Services Association (PSA) has filed an injunction in the High Court seeking an order to halt the implementation of the TT Revenue Authority (TTRA).

PSA president Leroy Baptiste said the proclamation of the TTRA Act, which came into effect on May 1, has thrown his members into a state of panic, as they are faced with the imminent threat of the destruction of their livelihood.

On instructions from the PSA, attorneys filed an application on Monday to stop the process until the determination of the substantive motion before it on the constitutionality of the TTRA.

The PSA filed a constitutional motion challenging the constitutionality of the act in July 2022 through attorney Anand Ramlogan, SC.

In the interim, Baptiste has advised all workers of the Board of Inland Revenue (BIR) and the Customs and Excise Division (CED) to stop activities connected with the TTRA.

“You are with immediate effect, to cease and desist from attending meetings called by the chairman of the board of the TTRA.”

Baptiste said the PSA believes it is manifestly unfair to its members for the Government to suddenly and without consultation, to move ahead and implement the TTRA.

“Moreover, to purport to give you options from which to choose, without you having the benefit of your union’s advice and representation, where such options are opaque and can negatively impact your terms and conditions of employment.”

Baptiste said the Prime Minister’s statement to get rid of the public service commissions has exposed the true agenda, which he said was: “The unfettered power to hire, fire, transfer, discipline workers, and the unfettered power to control all the arms of the State, including the police. Moreover, through boards, to exercise political control over the State’s resources.”