THE CONSTITUTION OF THE REPUBLIC OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO
THE DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC PROSECUTIONS AND THE OMBUDMAN
DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC PROSECUTIONS
APPOINTMENT, TENURE AND FUNCTIONS
90.- 1. The provisions of this section shall, subject to section 76(2)
have effect with respect to the conduct of prosecutions.
2. There shall be a Director of Public Prosecutions for Trinidad and Tobago
whose office shall be a public office.
3. The director of Public Prosecutions shall have power in any case in which he
considers it proper to do so-
a. to institute and undertake criminal proceedings against any person before
any court in respect of any offence against the law of Trinidad and Tobago;
b. to take over and continue any such criminal proceedings that may have been
instituted by any other person or authority;
c. to discontinue at any stage before judgment is delivered any such criminal
proceedings instituted or undertaken by himself or any other person or
4. The powers conferred upon the Director of Public Prosecutions by subsection
(4)(b) and (c) shall be vested in him to the exclusion of the person or
authority who instituted or undertook the criminal proceedings, except that a
person or authority that has instituted criminal proceedings may withdraw them
at any stage before the person against whom the proceedings have been
instituted has been charged before the Court.
5. For the purposes of this section a reference to criminal proceedings
includes an appeal from the determination of any court in criminal proceedings
or a case stated or a question of law reserved in respect of those
6. The functions of the Director of Public Prosecutions under subsection (3)
may be exercised by him in person or through other persons acting under and in
accordance with his general or special instructions.
APPOINTMENT AND CONDITIONS OF OFFICE
91.- 1. There shall be an Ombudsman for Trinidad and Tobago who shall
be an officer of Parliament and who shall not hold any other office of
emolument whether in the public service or otherwise nor engage in any
occupation for reward other than the duties of his office.
2. The Ombudsman shall be appointed by the President after consultation with
the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition.
3. The Ombudsman shall hold office for a term not exceeding five years and is
eligible for re-appointment.
4. Subject to subsection (3) the Ombudsman shall hold office in accordance with
5. Before entering upon the duties of his office, the Ombudsman shall take and
subscribe the oath of office before the Speaker of the House of
APPOINTMENT OF STAFF OF OMBUDSMAN
92.- 1. The Ombudsman shall be provided with a staff adequate for the
efficient discharge of his functions.
2. The staff of the Ombudsman shall be public officers appointed in accordance
with section 121(8).
FUNCTIONS OF OMBUDSMAN
93.- 1. Subject to this section and to sections 94 and 95 the principal
function of the Ombudsman shall be to investigate any decision or
recommendation made, including any advice given or recommendation made to a
Minister, or any act done or omitted by any department of Government or any
other authority to which this section applies, or by officers or members of
such a department or authority, being action taken in exercise of the
administrative functions of that department or authority.
2. The Ombudsman may investigate any such matter in any of the following
a. where a complaint is duly made to the Ombudsman by any person alleging that
the complainant has sustained an injustice as a result of a fault in
b. where a member of the House of Representatives requests the Ombudsman to
investigate the matter on the ground that a person or body of persons specified
in the request has or may have sustained such injustice;
c. in any other circumstances in which the Ombudsman considers that he ought to
investigate the matter on the ground that some person or body of persons has or
may have sustained such injustice.
3. The authorities other than departments of Government to which this section
a. local authorities or other bodies established for purposes of the public
service or of local Government;
b. authorities or bodies the majority of whose members are appointed by the
President or by a Minister or whose revenues consist wholly or mainly of moneys
provided out of public funds;
c. any authority empowered to determine the person with whom any contract shall
be entered into by or on behalf of Government;
d. such other authorities as may be prescribed.
RESTRICTIONS ON MATTERS FOR INVESTIGATION
94.- 1. In investigating any matter leading to, resulting from
connected with the decision of a Minister, the Ombudsman shall not inquire into
or question the policy of the Minister in accordance with which the decision
2. The Ombusman shall have power to investigate compleints of administrative
injustice under section 93 notwithstanding that such complaints raise questions
as to the integrity or corruption of the public service or any department or
office of the public service, and may investigate any conditions resulting
from, or calculated to facilitate or encourage corruption in the public
service, but he shall not undertake any investigation into specific charges of
corruption against individuals.
3. Where in the course of an investigation it appears to the Ombudsman that
ther is evidence of any corrupt act by any public officer or by any person
inconnection with the public service, he shall report the matte to the
appropriate authority with his recommendation as to any further investigation
he may consider proper.
4. The Ombudsman shall not investigate-
a. any action in respect of which the complainant has or had
i. a remedy by way of proceedings in a court; or
ii. a right of appeal, reference or review to or before an independent and
impartial tribunal other than a court; or
b. any such action, or action taken with respect to any matter, as is decribed
in the Third Schedule.
5. Notwithstanding subsection (4) the Ombudsman-
a. may investigate a matter notwithstanding that the complainant has or had a
remedy by way of proceedings in a court if satisfied that in the particular
circumstances it is not reasonable to expect him to take or to have taken such
b. is not in any case procluded from investigating any matter by reason only
that it is open to the complainant to apply th the High Court for redress under
section 14 (which relates to redress for contravention of the provisions for
the protection of fundamental rights).
DISCRETION OF OMBUDSMAN
95.- In determining whether t initiate, continue or discontinue an
investigation, the Ombudsman shall, subject to sections 93 and 94 act in his
dicretion and, in particular and without prejudice to the generality of this
dicretion, the Ombudsman may refuse to initiate or may discontinue an
investigation where it appears to him that-
a. a complaint relates to action of which the complainant has knowledge for
more than twelve months before the complaint was received by the Ombudsman;
b. the subject matter of the complaint is trivial;
c. the complaint is frivolous or vexatious os is not made in good faith; or
d. the complainant has not a sufficient interest in the subject matter of the
REPORT ON INVESTIGATION
96.- 1. Where a complaint or request for an investigation is duly made
and the Ombudsman decides not to investigate the matter or where he decides to
discontinue an investigation of the matter, he shall inform the person who made
the complaint or request of the reasons for his decision.
2. Upon the completion of an investigation the Ombudsman shall inform the
department of government or the authority concerned of the results of the
investigation and if he is of the opinion that any person has sustained an
injustice in consequence of a fault in administration, he shall inform the
department of government or the auhtority of the reason s for his opinions and
made such recommendations as he thinks fit. the Ombudsman may in his original
recommendations, or at any later stage if the thinks fit, specify the time
within which the injustice should be remedied.
3. Where the investigation is undertaken as a result of a complaint or request,
the Ombudsman shall inform the person who made the complaint or request of his
4. Where the matter is in the opinion of the Ombudsman of sufficient public
importance or where the Ombudsman has made a recommendation under subsection
(2) and within the time specified by him no sufficient action has been taken to
remedy the injustice, then, subject to such provision as may be made by
Parliament, the Ombudsman shall lay a special report on the case before
5. The Ombudman shall make annual reports on the performance of his functions
to Parliament which shall include statisties in such form and in such detail as
may be prescribed of the complaints received by him and the results of his
POWER TO OBTAIN EVIDENCE
97.- 1. The Ombudsman shall have the powers of the High court to summon
withnesses to appear before him and to compel them to give evidence on oath and
to produce documents relevant to the proceedings before him and all persons
giving evidence at those proceedings shal have the same duties and liabilities
and enjoy the same privileges as in the High Court.
2. The Ombudsman shall have power to enter and inspect the premises of any
department of government or any authority to which section 93 applies, to call
for, examine and where necessary retain any document kept on such premises and
there to carry out any investigation in pursuance of his functions.
PRESCRIBED MATTERS CONCERNING OMBUDSMAN
98.- 1. Subject to subsection (2), Parliament may make provision-
a. for regulating the procedure for the making of complaints and request to the
Ombudsman and for the exercise of the functions of the Ombudsman;
b. for conferring such powers on the Ombudsman and imposing such duties on
persons concerned as are necessary to facilitate the Ombudsman in the
performance of his functions; and
c. generally for giving effect to the provisions of this Part.
2. The Ombudsman may not be empowered to summon a Minister or a Parliamentary
Secretary to appear before him or to compel a Minister or a Parliamentary
Secretary to answer any questions relating to any matter under investigation by
3. The Ombudsman may not be empowered to summon any withness to produce any
Cabinet papers or to give any confidential income tax information.
4. No complainant may be required to pay any fee in respect of his complaint or
request or for any investigation to be made by the Ombudsman.
5. No proceedings, civil or criminal, may lie against the Ombudsman, or against
any person holding an office or appointment under him for anything he may do or
report or say in the course of the exercise or intended exercise of the
functions of the Ombudsman under this Constitution, unless it is shown that he
acted in bad faith.
6. The Ombudsman, and any person holding office or appointment under him may
not be called to give evidence in any Court, or in any proceedings of a
judicial nature, in respect of anything coming to his knowledge in the exercise
of his functions.
7. Anything said or any information supplied or any document, paper, or thing
produced by any person in the course of any enquiry by or proceedings before
and Ombudsman under this Constitution is privileged inthe same manner as if the
enquiry or proceedings were proceedings in a Court.
8. No proceeding of the Ombudsman may be held bad for want of form, and, except
on the ground of lack of jurisdiction, no proceeding or decision of an
Ombudsman is liable to be challenged, reviewed, quashed or called in question
in any Court.
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