No 'bly' for vendors this Christmas
Municipal corporations in western Jamaica are adamant that there will be no relaxation of their no vending policies this Christmas.
In St James, vendors are accustomed to taking over St James Street and Sam Sharpe Square in Montego Bay.
But the city's mayor, councillor Homer Davis, said the municipal corporation will rigorously enforce its no vending policy outside of the designated vending zones.
"It is important we have free public space because citizens must have free access without any vending or commercial activities taking place on the streets," said Davis.
SPIRIT OF GOODWILL
He said additional municipal police officers are now being trained to enforce the policy.
In Trelawny, Falmouth's mayor, councillor Colin Gager, who has had many bitter battles in trying to remove vendors from the town's historic Water Square, said no amount of persuasion, including the spirit of goodwill which surrounds Christmas, will cause him to give vendors, a 'bly.'
"I have fought long and hard for the square to be pedestrianised and be rid of vendors, and I will not have it any other way," said Gager. "An area near the present market heading in a southeastern direction is being prepared for the vendors."
Gager said persons who try to sell inside Water Square will face stiff penalties. He said the policy will stay in place as long as he is the mayor.
In Hanover, Lucea's mayor, councillor Sheridan Samuels, whose compliance unit has been doing an effective job in keeping vendors out of the Lucea town centre, said the policy will remain throughout the Christmas season as he will not allow vendors to hijack a programme that has been working very well over recent months..
"The (only) area identified for vending from December 19 to January 2, is an open lot on Millers Drive, which is owned by the Ministry of Labour and Social Security," he said.
Savanna-la-Mar's mayor, councillor Bertel Moore, who has had his fair share of challenges with vendors on Great George's Street, has made it clear that the rampant indiscipline of former years will not be tolerated this Christmas.