Last update: 11-Dec-2013 6:16 am
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Kublalsingh pitches new camp in Penal
Dr Wayne Kublalsingh has relocated the Highway Re-Route Movement (HRM) camp from Gopie Trace, Debe to state-owned land, saying the Government would not dare pick a fight over it. “The State doesn’t want to go to war with us over this piece of land,” he said yesterday. On August 18, Kublalsingh set up a camp on a privately-owned lot of land to monitor and prevent any construction activities on the Debe to Mon Desir leg of the Point Fortin Highway, and to inform residents about their rights in terms of land acquisition.
Since then, the land owners had asked the group to vacate the plot and on Sunday they moved onto a lot of land further down the street, which is owned by the state but has been used for decades by the community for farming. When the T&T Guardian visited the new camp site yesterday, three men from the community were continuing construction of the wood and galvanised structure. Ballyram Siew, 72, who lives next door, said he had been planting bodi, peas and tomatoes there since 1972, uninterrupted by the government.
When asked if anyone had raised an issue about the (HRM) using the state land as a camp that was meant to protest the Government’s plans to build the Debe to Mon Desir leg of the highway, Siew said no one had asked them to move. Kublalsingh said by phone yesterday that the HRM’s lawyers advised that the government would have to show proof it was state land and present a court order showing the title to the land.
He said if the government did that, then the group would “freely move” out of the land. “We have a right to be on that land, since Mr Siew and others have been farming on it for years,” Kublalsingh said. “They (government) don’t have the guts to go to war with the Highway Re-Route Movement on this piece of land, because they will lose."
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