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Matelot resident delivers letters of complaints

Monday, December 16, 2013
A tired John Lewis takes a rest on the sidewalk outside the Ministry of Works and Infrastructure head office at the corner of Richmond and London Streets, Port-of-Spain, on Friday. PHOTO: MARYANN AUGUSTE

John Lewis, a 49-year-old Matelot resident who left his home last Thursday, intending to walk to Port-of-Spain to deliver a letter to Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar’s office on Friday accomplished his goal. Lewis, a driver, embarked on a walk geared at raising awareness of the Government’s failure to fix the narrow roads in the rural community.



Though his walk was aborted on Thursday for medical reasons, he woke up at 4 am on Friday to continue his journey, walking from Valencia to Port-of-Spain to deliver letters to the Office of the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Works and the Office of the President. In an interview with the Guardian, shortly after he arrived in Port-of-Spain around 5.30 pm, Lewis said he was physically tired but relieved that he had accomplished his goal.


“I feel like I accomplished what I set out to do. The most important thing was that I deliver these letters,” Lewis said. Lewis said the letters contained his community’s need for their roads to be fixed. His complaint surrounded the constant threat of landslide and mud on a portion of the Paria Main Road. Lewis said that because of this situation, children were being prevented from going to school, smaller cars could not pass and Matelot residents were being inconvenienced in terms of their basic needs.


He said there had been occasions when an ambulance could not come to the community because the roads were impassable. Lewis said he was glad for the support of people along the way. “People who know Matelot will understand what I was doing and I received a lot of encouragement along the way.” While Lewis delivered his letter to the Ministry of Works, he said he was turned away from the Parliament by security officers.


“I need the Government to do something because it is their responsibility,” Lewis said. He said failure to fix the roads in the area was a type of oppression of poor people and their children.


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