Office of the Chairperson

The Chairperson​

The Regional Assembly is presided over by the Chairperson of the House who may not be an "elected" Member, that is a Member who is elected through the FPTP or PR. Since its inception, the Assembly has had three Chairpersons, all of whom have been unelected Members. Once elected to the Chair, the Chairperson owes his loyalty to the dignity of the Assembly and although politics almost always determine the choice of a presiding officer, one of the most important qualities of a Chairperson is impartiality. He has to remain above party politics.

The main function of the Chairperson is to ensure that the Standing Orders and Rules of the Regional Assembly are complied with. The Chairperson interprets and enforces the Standing Orders and for the purpose of interpretation, recourse is often had to Erskine May's Parliamentary Practice. This reliance is explained by the fact that the parliamentary system in Rodrigues has its origin in the United Kingdom's (UK) Westminster system of government. Additionally, the Rodrigues Regional Assembly's conception was determined from the case study of the Tobago House of Assembly which itself has been living autonomously of the mainland Trinidad for decades now.