MP meets with angry protesters in Portland

September 07, 2016
Jermaine Barnaby/Freelance Photographer Deion Thompson-Armstrong talking about the bad roads during a protest in Hectors River, Portland, yesterday.

Angry taxi and mini bus operators in Portland have vouched to continue their protest action despite an assurance given by Member of Parliament Dr Linvale Bloomfield that repairs to the roadway will begin later today.

The MP met with a contingent of taxi and mini bus operators in Hectors River in East Portland earlier today in an attempt to diffuse the ongoing tension and civil unrest, which has forced the abandonment of classes at several schools in the parish for a third consecutive day.

This morning, the roadblock was again remounted in sections of Fairy Hill, Boston, Pantons Hope, Rural Hill, Manchioneal and Long Road - extending to Hectors River. The taxi and mini bus operators also withdrew their services in protest over the deplorable road conditions.

Bloomfield, who sought to calm the angry protesters, gave them the assurance that asphalt work would begin near Long Bay and would continue easterly into Manchioneal. He noted that this will be dependent on the amount of material available.

However, the protesters poured cold water on the commitment given by the MP, arguing that repairs could have been carried out during the summer holiday. The protesters are adamant that their demands will have to be met, and that they are willing to continue to bear the inconvenience and hardships being dealt to students and the work force.

Today's protest action has forced the abandonment of classes at Happy Grove and Manchioneal All Age, as well as Fair Prospect and Rural Hill primary schools.

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