ACTIVIST Dr Wayne Kublalsingh disclosed yesterday that the Highway Re-Route Movement (HRM) is seeking a meeting with Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley.
Kublalsingh said the group is seeking to understand the position of all stakeholders in their cause, which is to convince the Government to re-route the Debe to Mon Desir leg of the San Fernando to Point Fortin Highway extension.
The group has made its desire to meet Rowley known to the Opposition People’s National Movement (PNM) and is waiting on a response from its political leader he said.
With rumours flying that Kublalsingh was to be arrested yesterday, he has continued to protest outside the Office of the Prime Minister, St Clair.
The activist was not arrested but said he is “prepared”, should it come to that.
He said if the police, who have so far been kind to him and members of the HRM and its supporters, are at any time ordered to arrest him, he is not concerned that the “bigger” cause will be harmed.
Kublalsingh was warned last week he could be held liable for any unauthorised protests or gatherings outside the PM’s office.
He added that much of the focus has been on him and his actions but more attention needs to be paid to the hundreds of people who will be negatively impacted by the highway segment under contention.
Kublalsingh added that the country as a whole should be concerned that “an arrest will take place” that will see the population living under siege.
He said this “arrest” would come in the form of complete suppression, if political and criminal elements were allowed to continue what he said was a mission to take over the country.
Corruption and efforts to take control of Trinidad and Tobago were happening at several levels, he said, be it among what appeared to petty criminals to the very top echelons of society.
Kublalsingh, who last year conducted a 21-day hunger strike in the same spot for the same reason, returned last Monday and, though not fasting, has sat almost daily outside the PM’s office with placards.
Yesterday was relatively quiet, with a handful of HRM members and supporters staying with Kublalsingh from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., ensuring his welfare through rain and sun.
He revealed that the HRM was also preparing to monitor the State’s activities in the Debe, San Francique and Mon Desir areas, it has been told that work on the controversial segment may soon start.
“We will be building a camp at Gopie Trace to monitor this,” Kublasingh said, adding that heavy equipment has been moving in and out of that area in the past few weeks.
He also said the HRM remains concerned that Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar may look to start work even as the group’s constitutional motion against the State lies in the High Court, with the next hearing due in October.
He said the group still wants to know whether Persad-Bissessar and the Government intend to wait on the court’s decision, warning that should the court decide in favour of the HRM, members of the Government could face criminal charges.
The group is trying to submit the report produced by the Highway Review Committee (HRC) as part of its case.
The report, though funded by the State, was produced by a host of independent bodies, including the Joint Consultative Council (JCC), and headed by Dr James Armstrong, Stated among its recommendations was that the State should do further studies before continuing with that portion of the highway.
The HRC has also stated that the document goes beyond this particular project and could serve as a guide to this and future governments on how to go about mega-projects while interacting with civil society.
The group had a brief meeting with Persad-Bissessar last Thursday at the Diplomatic Centre in St Ann’s, where she said she did not know if the State would abide by the report or the ruling of the court.
On Wednesday, Kublalsingh and two members of the HRM met with President Anthony Carmona, who has indicated he will offer more on the situation by September, after he has read the report in its entirety.