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Travel & Tourism . Tourist Guide to the Country

Trinidad & Tobago Government

Trinidad and Tobago    Government Top of Page
Country name: conventional long form:  Republic of Trinidad and Tobago

conventional short form:  Trinidad and Tobago
Government type: parliamentary democracy
Capital: Port-of-Spain
Administrative divisions: 8 counties, 3 municipalities*, and 1 ward**; Arima*, Caroni, Mayaro, Nariva, Port-of-Spain*, Saint Andrew, Saint David, Saint George, Saint Patrick, San Fernando*, Tobago**, Victoria
Independence: 31 August 1962 (from UK)
National holiday: Independence Day, 31 August (1962)
Constitution: 1 August 1976
Legal system: based on English common law; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state:  President Arthur Napoleon Raymond ROBINSON (since 19 March 1997)

head of government:  Prime Minister Basdeo PANDAY (since 9 November 1995)

cabinet:  Cabinet appointed from among the members of Parliament

elections:  president elected by an electoral college, which consists of the members of the Senate and House of Representatives, for a five-year term; election last held 11 December 2000 (next to be held by NA 2005); prime minister appointed from among the members of Parliament; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party in the House of Representatives is usually appointed prime minister

election results:  Arthur Napoleon Raymond ROBINSON elected president; percent of electoral college vote - 69%
Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (31 seats; members appointed by the president for a maximum term of five years) and the House of Representatives (36 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)

elections:  House of Representatives - last held 11 December 2000 (next to be held by December 2005)

election results:  House of Representatives - percent of vote - UNC 58.1%, PNM 40.8%, NAR 1.1%; seats by party - UNC 19, PNM 16, NAR 1

note:  Tobago has a unicameral House of Assembly, with 15 members serving four-year terms
Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Judicature (comprised of the High Court of Justice and the Court of Appeals; the chief justice is appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister and the leader of the opposition; other justices are appointed by the president on the advice of the Judicial and Legal Service Commission); High Court of Justice; Court of Appeals; The Majistracy (hears minor civil cases and summary criminal cases)
Political parties and leaders: National Alliance for Reconstruction or NAR [Hochay CHARLES]; People's Empowerment Party or PEP [leader NA]; People's National Movement or PNM [Patrick MANNING]; United National Congress or UNC [Basdeo PANDAY]
Political pressure groups and leaders: Jamaat Al Musilmeen [Abu BAKR]
International organization participation: ACP, C, Caricom, CCC, CDB, ECLAC, FAO, G-24, G-77, IADB, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, LAES, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNU, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO
Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission:  Ambassador (vacant)

chancery:  1708 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036

telephone:  [1] (202) 467-6490

FAX:  [1] (202) 785-3130

consulate(s) general:  Miami and New York
Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission:  Ambassador Edward E. SHUMAKER, III (until April, 2001)

embassy:  15 Queen's Park West, Port-of-Spain

mailing address:  P. O. Box 752, Port-of-Spain

telephone:  [1] (868) 622-6371 through 6376, 6176

FAX:  [1] (868) 628-5462
Flag description: red with a white-edged black diagonal band from the upper hoist side


Countryfacts Information Courtesy: CIA Worldbook

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