Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 8th 2014 Contents A6
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, December 8, 2014
Security guards attached to the
highway construction project are
scared after masked saboteurs set
fire to a multi-million-dollar crane
at the OAS highway job site in Point
Fortin, as a warning to the Govern-
The cutlass-wielding assailants have
ordered the National Infrastructure
Company Ltd (Nidco) to "pay farmers
now or face the consequences."
The attack occurred around 11 am
while the lone security guard Chris
Bowen was on duty about a quarter-
mile from the Dunlop Roundabout in
Police said three masked men in
dark clothing went to the unlit area,
where lands are being cleared to build
the Solomon Hochoy highway exten-
sion, and grabbed Bowen, saying,
"This is a warning to the Government
to pay all farmers now."
Telling Bowen, "We not on you,"
the man pointed their cutlasses at
him and ordered him to leave. Bowen
ran up a hill and later saw fire coming
from the cabin of the crane. Police
said the men threw a molotov cocktail
inside the crane and then ran off.
Bowen called the Point Fortin police,
who alerted firefighters. Firefighters
later found remnants of kerosene
inside the charred remnants of the
At the site yesterday, several security
guards called for more police patrols,
proper lighting towers and additional
manpower. Security guard Dannie
Bisnath said he saw the fire around
midnight and alerted Hayden Nelson,
who works with API Pipeline Con-
struction Company Limited nearby.
Nelson said since the sabotage he is
scared for his life.
"This job is high risk because we
do not have any lights here. We also
need police to do patrols in here
because we are not safe," Nelson said.
He said it was not the first time
workers had been threatened.
"A few months ago, some protesters
came and threatened the supervisor.
When I heard the crane was burning
down I realised that things were get-
ting worst," Nelson said.
Andy Wallace, who was on duty at
the construction site, said female
guards were urged to walk to work
with knives in their bags.
"I told them that it is not safe. They
should have police officers from the
Tactical Unit stationed here," Wallace
"The place so dark at nights that
you cannot see your hand in front
He said guards had no protection
and were left under a tent to brave
Another guard who requested
anonymity, said the saboteurs were
"thugs who just wanted free money."
"The Government giving out a lot
of money to people who claiming they
have produce on the lands and this
is not true. People collect money two
and three times and now they think
by threatening guards and burning
down machinery they will get their
way," the guard said.
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Crane burnt down; security scared...
Saboteurs strike on highway site
Andy Wallace, of First Response
Services Ltd, at the OAS job site in
Point Fortin yesterday.
PHOTOS: KRISTIAN DE SILVA
Contacted yesterday, Nidco
chairman Dr Carson Charles
denied that people were paid
several times. He also said it was
thugs, not farmers, who were
responsible for the sabotage.
"Farmers don't behave this way.
These people are thugs and they
are trying to shake down money
from Nidco for the Christmas
season," Charles contended.
He urged OAS to secure its own
equipment and improve security
at all highway job sites.
Saying $4 million has already been
paid out to farmers, Charles
promised to continue to
compensate only those with
legitimate claims. He said
unscrupulous people were trying
to make false claims, but noted
that only those who can provide
evidence of damage will be
The crane which was
firebombed on the OAS
job site at Dunlop
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