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Gov’t has given away our taxi rights! – Edmund Maduro

February 7th, 2014 | Tags: Edmund Maduro taxi operators rights constitution
Talk show host and social commentator, Edmund Maduro has lashed out at the Territory’s leaders for allegedly selling off the rights of locals. Photo: VINO/File
According to the outspoken commentator, NCL will be able to choose who they want in preference to local taxi drivers. Photo: VINO/File
According to the outspoken commentator, NCL will be able to choose who they want in preference to local taxi drivers. Photo: VINO/File
The show was co-hosted by Rajah A. Smith. Photo: VINO/File
The show was co-hosted by Rajah A. Smith. Photo: VINO/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI – In an emotionally charged response to revelations emerging from government’s berthing agreement signed with Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) and Disney Cruise Line (DCL), talk show host and social commentator, Edmund Maduro has lashed out at the Territory’s leaders for allegedly selling off the rights of locals.

“We can’t let Tom, Dick and Harry… come here and take over what belongs to our children,” Maduro said on the EGM Show which was aired on ZRod 103.7FM last evening, February 7, 2014.

“You see what this government has done?” Maduro asked. “This government has given away our taxi rights.”

Based on the terms of the agreement signed between the National Democratic Party (NDP) Government with the cruise lines, Maduro said NCL is now going to be able to decide who will carry their passengers and he termed this as a discriminatory practice.

“I’m saying to you that under the constitution that is discriminatory, we’re discriminating against our own people,” Maduro added.

According to the outspoken commentator, NCL will be able to choose who they want in preference to local taxi drivers. He added that local taxi drivers are already under a tariff and cannot charge less or more than they currently do. “We don’t know what Norwegian is going to charge anybody,” he complained.

Maduro emphasised that under the Territory’s constitution, every taxi operator has the right to go out and line up one after the other and receive passengers. “Norwegian don’t have no right whatsoever and should never be given that right to say who will carry the passengers. They come here to enjoy our culture and they can’t come here to tell us what to do,” the host continued.

He advised that NCL should manage their ships and leave the land management to locals. “It is ridiculous that we have a government called the NDP that has gone and signed away the right of our taxi gentlemen.”

Maduro suggested that taxi operators come together and challenge the government on the agreements that were signed. “We must get the taxi boys to pull together and get this thing going properly,” he stated, “if we don’t do that we’re in a lot of trouble.”

The show was co-hosted by Rajah A. Smith.

26 Responses to “Gov’t has given away our taxi rights! – Edmund Maduro”

  • Eh? (07/02/2014, 09:07) Like (5) Dislike (2) Reply
    Has Edmund read the agreement??
  • cay (07/02/2014, 09:10) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    Ting to talk
  • please (07/02/2014, 09:31) Like (7) Dislike (3) Reply
    They will pick approved local taxi drivers from those that apply to them, this is a good thing. Edmund causing confusion again.
    • Eh Eh! (07/02/2014, 11:28) Like (5) Dislike (3) Reply

      An approve taxi driver comes from the traffic department not from NCL & DCL. Who the h..l you representing EH? Ayo SICK, HEAD NO GOOD! When you go to a restaurant e.g. Simply Delicious you stand in the damn line and wait. Everybody have a right to EAT.

      I don't approve of this move and I will campaign hard against it.

      Edmond, people don't like your loud mouth but I think you on to something here. Don't let it rest like Sam. Take it to the streets if you have to.

      • reality (07/02/2014, 14:47) Like (7) Dislike (1) Reply
        Eh Eh!

        Stop being ignorant. 'Approved' taxi means someone that will sign a contract with the Cruise Line to do the tours that they sell on board. Some people buy tour packages when they buy their cruise tickets and that's what they mean by approved. Many other cruisers take the option of spur of the moment or street deal tours, i.e. they rather take a walk through town and negotiate their own Taxi, rather than paying upfront for it on the cruise. What if you pay for all your tours upfront and when you reach the destination you don't feel like it? Money lost. It's happening right now where certain agents do the 'Cruise Tour' and the other taxi guys do the regular tours. Doing the math, they plan for in excess of 500,000 people to come here. Let's say only half get off, that's 250,000. Let's say half purchase cruise tours, that's 125k to split between the other drivers. These drivers know better and should tell the truth. The only thing you say with sense is line up which is what they do for the other passengers. However, if the cruise line SELLS a tour, they must ensure that the people who will be representing their brand, have proper vehicles and proper services because the people would have pre-paid for their tour. I don't know why things here have to always be about cursing and carrying on. The taxi men need to come clean and explain to the public how the cruise thing works. Every other cruise port has the same arrangement. Here we have Mr. Fahie, The Romney's, Sebastien and I think someone else. They invested in fleets and have agreements with the ship to do the Ship's Tours. The point is, at every destination the Ship sells tours and those tours can ONLY be done by approved Taxi's. All other passengers are free to go with who they want and that's how the other drivers get passengers. Nothing won't be different to how it is already. People here just hate rules.
  • fox (07/02/2014, 09:46) Like (2) Dislike (3) Reply
    Ndp must go
  • question (07/02/2014, 11:01) Like (43) Dislike (1) Reply
    How much money are the Taxi men collectively investing in the cruise pier? How much money are they investing in the landside development? How much ? eh? I can't hear you, oh, none? Wait! How much taxes do they pay? What? What you mean you don't know? What? There's really now way to tell how much they truly earned, therefore they only pay taxes on what they report? So, how much do they contribute for our road infrastructure, which takes the stress of their big buses touring up and down? What? What you mean they don't have to pay that? So how much do they donate to the Hospital, Schools, needy etc? Nothing as far as you're aware? What? So how much do they contribute to Tourist Board for marketing the Territory, meaning they continue to get a steady flow of tourist business? None? How much do they spend actively marketing the BVI from their own pocket? Nothing? So wait, man wait, what you telling me? These guys haven't put forward alternatives for the cruise pier? They haven't reached out to any cruise lines about berthing or tour agreements? Nothing? So then the biggest question? Why do we care what they think when all they seem to do is make a lot of money with little effort and contribute little or nothing? Well, at least they have to pay good duty fees on them big expensive buses and coasters they bring in, so that's something. WHAT?? WHAT YOU MEAN THEY DON'T PAY DUTY ON THEM? FOR REAL? TAXI MEN GET TO BRING IN A VEHICLE COMPLETELY DUTY FREE? So in a nutshell, income tax on what 'they' report but not what they actually make as nobody really checking? No plans of their own? no contribution to road network? No contribution to tourism? No ideas of their own? And they have all this clout? So why is nobody calling them out on this? I'm confused, can someone please help me here?
    • mother hen (07/02/2014, 12:11) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Need will go help will come!
    • yellow (07/02/2014, 12:42) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      There is nothing in this deal that is possible to attain for the people.
    • Exactly (07/02/2014, 13:08) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      The biggest problem is forcing GOVERNMENT to live within its means ... and for Government to stop thinking that any policy it desires to implement to curry favour with a section of the electorate /and business is fine regardless of the cost ...
    • Raymond (07/02/2014, 13:48) Like (6) Dislike (1) Reply
      I agree 100%. They pay little or no taxes, drive any old how on the roads, are often nastry to locals, and now they have Edmund batting for them? Schuppsss
    • question (07/02/2014, 14:00) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      Nobody answer me yet? What happen? lol
    • life (07/02/2014, 14:57) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      Who did the taxi men dem vote for? Taxi men dem you want to put that in your pipe and smoke it?
  • Hmmm (07/02/2014, 11:02) Like (6) Dislike (1) Reply
    I understand the frustration of the Taxi man but I probably wouldn't waste my time protesting. If I were one of them, I'd start typing up my CV and getting my vehicle up to standard and applying to work with NCL. For all we know, they might be paying more than what these Taxi man are making. And as they say, "If you can't beat them, join them!"
    • yes (07/02/2014, 11:51) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply

      THANK YOU! Who gives taxi men the right to sit back and automatically make money? That's not fair to all of us here working our ass off for our daily dollar. They barely pay tax and always to the front of the line balling. What to they contribute to the economy? do they give back? tell them haul their ass. Instead of trying to form a proper coalition and approach the liners/government with a proper proposal they up and down talking s#!t.

  • pat (07/02/2014, 12:18) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    how much money is Romney making in this deal? They take a piece of every passenger. I understand on some level, If I was a businessman, I would want to put the best foot forward in well maintained vehicles, well-groomed and knowledgable drivers for the best impression. that said, that has never been the way for taxi drivers which are a powerful lobbying group and basically get their own way a lot. Given the perks, there are more taxi drivers per person/ passenger in BVI then there is in NYC! true. The bigger issue is the agreement with the cruise ship co. seem to ignore good governance, transparency, even the audit report pointing to conflicts of interest and illegalities, which should cause people to go to jail let alone fired. We still end up with the same contested deal with the same contested players including Hugh Darley and Disney.
  • polo (07/02/2014, 12:22) Like (6) Dislike (5) Reply
    This is a negative step for the youths in the bvi
  • xxxxxxxx (07/02/2014, 12:35) Like (5) Dislike (3) Reply
    We should all pray, that the dirty, nasty, deal with be overturned
  • Rights? (07/02/2014, 12:39) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
    What are the Taxi Rights that are being taken away? Can Edmund elaborate a bit? Does Edmund and these other people understand what 'Agreement' means? If you sign an 'Agreement' with someone doesn't that impress that it's 'reciprocal' in some respects? If the cruise companies signs an agreement where they guarantee revenues, don't you think they want something in return? A developer comes here to spend $50mil, don't you think they want something in return? I understand we can't sell ourselves short and should read through any agreements thoroughly but it seems the culture of the BVI is that we should benefit 100% from everything while other parties should just be happy that they made us happy. I don't get that. Financial Services will not bring in what it's bringing now forever, we don't have oil, we don't have anything to export therefore we need foreign investment. That's our dilemma right now and we need to face it. We shouldn't lay out the red carpet to any body willy nilly just for a dollar, but when we do our due diligence and we are comfortable letting in someone or an entity, we should do so with common sense, business sense and not emotions.
  • good idea (07/02/2014, 14:38) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
    You can best believe that the cruise lines will have very strict standards in place for the transportation services offered. SAFE, well maintained vehicles with CAPABLE drivers. Taximan is his own worst enemy and always crying he broke. Now, let's think, who has nice vehicles, capable of carrying a lot of people and is already in bed with the cruise lines? Guess who is going to be the approved transportation provider?
    • to; good idea (07/02/2014, 16:24) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
      Ndp paid loggers have arise
      • HAHA (07/02/2014, 16:54) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
        When they don't have a rebuttal to simple common sense they call you a paid ndp blogger. BOO, been there done that LOL! NDP does not have a copyright on simple common sense. Tours sold by the Cruise Ships come with liabilities therefore they must ensure that the people transporting their guests on tours SOLD BY THEM are in proper shape, in accordance with their own specifications. What's wrong with that?
    • LOL! (07/02/2014, 17:21) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Brokes, taximen are not brokes...they just invest in Western Union transfers to Mingo.
  • Edward (08/02/2014, 08:54) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    What this really means is the cruise line sells the tourist a tour at a high price. The cruise line keeps most of the money. The taximen get some, the port agent (Romney) gets some and the government gets some. If the tourist walk to town and take a taxi, the taximan gets all of the money and the tourist gets a tour at a lower cost because the middle men are not grabbing a piece of the action.
  • 360 (08/02/2014, 10:36) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    We just need to make sure that voice is brought to the polls
    • Xxx (08/02/2014, 13:35) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      Voting day cannot come fast enough for me. You all can do what you want but not as long as you want.

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