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Minister of Works and Transport Rohan Sinanan.

Works and Transport Minister Rohan Sinanan says the proposed laws in the Motor Vehicles and Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill, 2019, will ensure the tint on vehicles is properly handled and not via Licensing officer’s whim and fancy.

He said a transport officer once told him he determined if a tint was too dark or was appropriate according to whether the vehicle’s driver was Indo-Trinidadian and Afro-Trinidadian.

Sinanan said he was shocked and immediately called top Transport brass, ordering drafting of a new law.

“I said, this can’t continue,” Sinanan said during debate on the bill at yesterday’s Senate sitting.

In the bill, the Transport Commissioner can vary tint if a driver has a health issue or for security reasons. However, the darkness of tint will now be ascertained by an instrument.

Sinanan said the new radio frequency (RF) ID number plates will allow for customised numbers, earning the state funding. He said the chip in the RFID number plates would prevent people from simply changing a number plate when they steal a car. Even if they repaint the car, the chip will lead police to culprits. He noted that repainting of vehicles must also now be reported to the Licensing Division.

“We have over 1.1 million cars registered, many may not be on the road. We found several cars with the same number plate. But the RFID plate system will eliminate this,” he said.

Sinanan said a “significant amount” of people were paying bribes at Licensing to get special license numbers. He said that’s not happening now since numbers are being computer-generated.

Following the COVID-19 situation, he said a pilot programme will be done on the new registration process. (GA)