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November 17, 2012
Star News


Vendors won't run from cops

Andre' Williams, STAR Writer

Some vendors in downtown Kingston say they are adamant that this Christmas season they won't tolerate the 'cat and mouse' game with the relevant authorities and are planning to protest, THE STAR has learnt.

On a daily basis these vendors claim they are subjected to small sales or none at all because they have to be running from the police and other city officials.

When THE STAR visited a section of Orange Street on Thursday, numerous vendors were seen with goods of all different sorts in hand, moving briskly, shouting and running from the police.

Our news team witnessed several unlucky vendors being apprehended by police personnel and their goods confiscated.

One man, commonly referred to as 'Spanglas', however, was not up for lifting his goods and running as the police approached.

Spanglas said, "Mi nuh ina nuh cat-and-mouse thing wid dem police ya enuh. We a try mek something gwan and dem a slow up di things, and some a dem nah gi nuh bly. Mi haffi leave my community and come a road come hustle so das mi youth dem have something. A weh dem want di youths dem do otherwise?"

The man continued, "A nuff a mi fren dem get lock up since weh day... dem fi go lock up people weh a rob and kill ... not people weh a hustle."

Illegal vending

A senior police source attached to the Island Special Constabulary Force told THE STAR that numerous arrests have been made with regard to illegal vending and a number of people put before the courts.

Our news team was told that fines, starting at $3,000 upwards, can be imposed by the courts.

More over, the Kingston and St Andrew Corporation (KSAC) reportedly is in discussion with its partners to increase vending as well as parking facilities in the city's downtown market district in time for the busy Christmas season.

Mayor of Kingston Angela Brown Burke had promised to get on top of the problem of illegal vending by mid-October to ensure a better shopping environment in December.

Mayor Brown Burke had expressed then, "December is one of our greatest challenges as far as vending is concerned, and we are determined at the KSAC that December is going to be a pleasant experience downtown, both for the vendors, the merchants and for those who are willing to come downtown to shop."

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