Carli Bay fishermen protest fuel price hike, neglect

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

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“$1,500 in gas and look at what’s going on here,” cried one Carli Bay fisherman during a protest on Friday morning as he dragged a crate carrying four fish.

One fisherman, who gave his name as Allister, said this is all they can get lately owing to the high levels of pollution in the Gulf of Paria. He said because of the pollution, they have to go further out to sea to catch anything.

Around 20 fishermen protested at the Orange Valley Junction, which this created traffic for drivers using the Waterloo Road.

Imtiaz Khan, president of the Carli Bay Fishing Association, shouted, “We want equity!” Other protesters told drivers they would not be able to go futher. Some began turning around while others still tried to get past the crowd. Diesel, super and premium gasoline prices were increased on Tuesday. Finance Minister Colm Imbert announced this on April 9.

Khan said along with fuel prices, the fishermen also have problems with lighting at Carli Bay, non-functioning cold storage units and pirates both at sea and on land, making it harder to earn a living.

Newsday contacted MP Ravi Ratiram of Couva North before he went to Parliament on Friday. He said these issues and more had been brought up with him and he intended to raise them with the authorities.