Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 13th 2017 Contents A12 news
guardian.co.tt Thursday, July 13, 2017
San Fernando mayor
Give new traffic
plan a chance
Despite the traffic chaos and cries of frustration
from motorists who encountered a new traffic
plan for the city of San Fernando on Tuesday,
mayor Junia Regrello is urging road users to give
it a chance.
His plea was supported by Rural Development and
Local Government Minister Kazim Hosein as they
stressed the importance of addressing the usual traffic
congestion in the heart of the city.
As Regrello walked through the streets to monitor
the plan, passing taxi drivers, especially those plying
the San Fernando to Marabella route called out to him,
saying the plan was not working.
However, Princes Town and Fyzabad taxi drivers
found that the new route allowed them to enter and
leave the city easier.
There was confusion among Port-of-Spain, Curepe
and Chaguanas taxi drivers as their designated areas were
moved without any signs and proper notification.
Regrello chided those taxi drivers who were parked on the roadway,
restricting the flow of traffic along High Street. He said one of the
problems that lead to traffic congestion was that some taxi drivers
were indisciplined and failed to obey the law.
Several business owners and managers complained that putting
taxis on both sides of upper High Street restricted suppliers from
Regrello said while there have been complaints, some people have
also commended the plan.
He said it was a two-week experimental plan and will be reviewed.
Several parts of the plan were tweaked on Tuesday, which included
leaving the Princes Town taxi stand on Promenade Street as opposed to
moving it to Mucurapo Street.
"That required painting over the spot and moving the cars onto the
other side of the road and that created some inconvenience today. I think
we should be able to move smoothly tomorrow. We just need more signage
and clearer indicators. A lot of people do not read and this plan has been
out there and on social media for some time, but everyone came out this
morning expecting this to be the same. It will take a while to get used
to so this is why we are implementing this plan while schools are out.
This way we can find the problems and address it before school
reopens," Regrello said.
Hosein visited Regrello after receiving several complaints
from taxi drivers.
However, he said, the main stakeholders being consult-
ed, they should give the plan a chance. He said Traffic
Management Branch of the Ministry was still putting
adequate signage and when completed, people should
see the benefits.
A police officer who was
injured on the job has been
awarded close to half of a
million dollars in compen-
In handing down the de-
cision, Master Patricia So-
bion-Awai also ruled that
Bunny Kameel Ali is entitled
to be paid outstanding remu-
neration for the period com-
mencing April 1, 2014 until
his retirement in December 9,
The court also ruled that
Ali is entitled to payment of
his salary,which the service
had failed to pay him for ap-
proximately two years. For
this, however, Ali will have
to undergo further litigation
in the court to retrieve his
salary from the State.
His attorney, Saira
Lakhan, saidthe payment
of his salary was stopped
for no reason after he filed
the court proceedings re-
lating to his injuries.
Attorney Nisa Simmons
appeared on behalf of the
Ali, a police officer with
over 20 years service, was
injured on three sepa-
rate occasions during the
course of his duties at the
San Fernando Magistrates'
While on duty at the
Court and Process Branch
at theSan Fernando Mag-
istrates Court on October
5, 2009, there was a fight
among prisoners in the cell
block. Ali sustained inju-
ries when he was used as
a shield by the prisoner
under attack and six pris-
oners jumped on him.The
six were charged and found guilty of
Ali was placed on exemption from
outdoor duties and was referred to
a physiotherapist. On December 28,
2009, while assisting another police
officer in placing prisoners in the cell
block, another fight broke out.
Ali's injuries were aggravated when
he received further blows to his lower
back, causing him to engage in various
periods of injury leave over an extended
period of time.
Again on October 11, 2011, Ali was back
at work and while he was assisting a fellow
officer to "forcefully remove a prisoner from
a cell who was being assaulted by other pris-
oners," he felt a "piercing pain to his lower
back which ran down to both of his legs."
Ali sued the State for negligence.
On Monday, Sobion-Awai award-
ed general damages to Ali in the
sum of $150,000, $50,000 for
future surgery, $118,882.92
for future loss of earnings
and special damages in the
sum of $70,048.37, with in-
terest at 2.5 per cent from
October 11, 2001.
San Fernando Mayor Junia Regrello speaks to a motorist on
High Street while observing the new traffic plans on
Tuesday. PHOTO: RISHI RAGOONATH
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