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Green-band 'road hogs' holding commuters to ransom

I WISH to highlight the distasteful and unacceptable behaviour being exhibited recently by many of the Chaguanas-Curepe green-band maxi-taxi drivers.

Since the commencement of the school term, these drivers have blatantly been plying their trade along the taxi stand for the highway cars heading to Chaguanas/San Fernando.

It is now the norm for these road hogs to disregard the designated "maxi" stand and ply for passengers outside the designated areas, often times leaving the travelling public at their mercy to be chasing after them in order to secure transport to their destinations.

A colleague mentioned to me that a call was placed to the president of the Maxi Taxi Association, raising the issue. However, the secretary, while being understanding, stated that without assistance from the transit police it is powerless to enforce rules against these delinquent drivers. Mind you, there are those who still use the "maxi" stand, but these are very few.

This begs the question: why must there be a figure of authority or the threat of reprimand before these drivers obey the law? Why are we, the travelling public, being held to ransom by these drivers who clearly care only for themselves?

Often times it is claimed by the said drivers that there is traffic on the "ole road", so they hustle passengers for direct highway. This claim has been disputed and found to be false since other drivers usually go down the said route and traffic is at a minimal on most days.

It is time the travelling public ceases to be held at the whim and fancy of these drivers, who are completely reckless in their driving, polluting the air by poorly maintained diesel pumps, increasing fees under the pretence of high prices for parts and fuel, and who will strike at the drop of a hat if need be in order to monopolise the situation.

When will we, the travelling public, realise we can change this, and when will we stand up and say no more? These drivers depend on our dollars to make ends meet. Why then are we being treated as beggars for their service?

I am one individual who will highlight this plight via television and print media. A "no entry to maxi taxis" sign should be placed in order to force them to obey the rules, and that is what I will be rallying for. Enough is enough. We are not to be taken for granted by service providers who pay no taxes and depend on our hard-earned dollars to pay their bills.

Karishma Lochan

via e-mail

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