St Lucia bus drivers protest, seeks government assistance

St Lucia bus drivers on strike
St Lucia bus drivers on strike

St Lucia: Bus drivers all across St Lucia on Monday announced to go on strike over COVID-19 guidelines for the public transportation in the country.

The president of the Gros Islet Minibus Association, Danny Edwards, during a conversation with the local news channel, said that they are standing in solidarity with their fellow bus drivers from Vieux Fort. He explained that bus drivers were limited to ten passengers on the basis that they were not adhering the coronavirus precaution guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health.

He further added that all the bus drivers are upholding the protocols issued by the government, especially when it comes to the drivers of Gros Islet. Moreover, he expressed that these protocols cost them over $1000 a week to maintain social distancing and to make sure that all the passengers are wearing the masks. Giving remarks on this, he added that they deserve relief right now.

Another bus driver, Mark Nigel said that bus drivers are also the part of people suffering from complete losses due to covid-19 since march lockdowns and they are the only people who are left with no relief fund by the government. “Government did not provide us with any sort of support or relief in matters of stimulus package like our neighbouring nations.”

“We have waited for long enough to hear from the government, and they failed us. Now is the time we stand for our rightful reliefs, and we will stage a protest against the government until they sit down with the administrative authorities,” said Nigel.

According to information, the drivers are now ready to stage a protest for indefinite period seeking government to take quick action in the matter of this issue. Sources also revealed that since the strike was on, President of the National Council on Public Transportation was called by the Minister of Transport, Guy Joseph to resolve the issue, but no fresh news is out till now.