Tuschen taxi drivers strike over parking tiff with vendors

Lack of parking space led to a strike yesterday in Tuschen as taxi drivers refused to carry passengers in the village.

Forty taxi drivers gathered on the Tuschen Hire Car Park, West Coast Demerara, insisting that Tuschen market vendors remove their stalls from the park.  The issue of limited space had been an ongoing problem for three years, resulting in an unmistakable division between the drivers and the vendors.

“We need the passageway cleared. The stalls are blocking our cars from passing,” one driver told this newspaper.

The drivers are forced to discharge passengers on the Tuschen public road, which is not only unsafe but also unlawful. “We can’t stop the passengers from coming out the car on the public road, because the road is usually busy,” he added, saying that customers are generally impatient and refuse to wait for the drivers to find an alternative parking space.

“When we put out passengers on the road corner, we gon get charged cause the police says it obstruction to traffic,” another irate driver stated. He also said that the police attempted to assist them but later said it was a matter for the Neighbour-hood Democratic Council (NDC). The taxi drivers then tried to contact NDC, in vain. “The Chairman of the NDC refuse to speak to us,” he added.

Efforts by this newspaper to contact the NDC chairman were also futile.

Vendors of the market said that they would not move their stalls without permission from the NDC. “The NDC put us here and they have to move us,” a vendor said.

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