Villagers blocked Rapsey Trace in Cumuto with debris and then set it on fire during an early morning protest yesterday over the deplorable condition of the road. The protest caused gridlock traffic that affected schools and businesses in the community.
The villagers are blaming both the Ministry of Works and Transport and the Sangre Grande Regional Corporation for the state of the road.
Rista La Croix, who has lived in Cumuto all her life, said it is the worst she has seen the road. She said the villagers are frustrated at the many unkept promises from the authorities.
“The only time we see our representative is during election time in Rapsey Trace. The villagers have to use broken bricks to fill up the potholes so some of us can pass peacefully. The other issue is that the councillor has paved one part of Rapsey Trace but the other half is left undone for the residents to fix.
“Election is coming close. We are praying and hoping that our road gets paved. Please, please, please, please do this for us. We are tired,” she said.
La Croix, standing in the roadway not too far from the burning debris, said Councillor for Cumuto/Tamana Anil Maharaj is aware of the deplorable road conditions.
She said: “All we have been hearing from him is that the money wasn’t released. That’s all we have been hearing from him, how much money was released and why it couldn’t be fixed.”
Contacted for comment, Maharaj said he has been trying to find a solution for the villagers but the road does not fall under the purview of the Sangre Grande Regional Corporation.
“I have contacted the Ministry of Works and Transport about Rapsey Trace. I was told that a contract was awarded to a contractor and the work was expected to commence on June 1. However, this did not materialise.”
He said that was why the villagers decided to block the roads.