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City vendors tired of ‘moving game’

Barry Alleyne

City vendors tired of ‘moving game’

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Enough of the bureaucracy!That was the cry of the Barbados Association of Retailers, Vendors and Entrepreneurs (BARVEN) yesterday, after members were forced to relocate to a number of kiosks beside the Chamberlain Bridge in the heart of Bridgetown.“Relocating sometimes comes with the job,” BARVEN’s public relations officer, Judy Lorne, conceded, “but our members are tired of the bureaucracy. They just keep moving us around. We need a permanent fixture to call home.”The vendors received letters from the Barbados Tourism Investment Incorporation on Tuesday, informing them they would have to move from their roadside spots and use the kiosks from today.“This seemed to have been in the making for a while, from when the bridge was redone, and Independence Square was renovated. They should have really put up kiosks in the garden square at that time. That is what we were made to understand a few years ago, but it never came to be, and the Square was finalised,” Lorne said. She said vendors’ kiosks should have been part of  Independence Square’s general infra-structure in the first place.“If ministers were selling there, there would be wall-to-wall carpeting and palm trees,” Lorne added. “These kiosks should be conformed to properly accommodate the vendors, not that they have to wash off their merchandise after the rain falls.”According to Lorne, BARVEN would try to have the matter settled amicably when they meet with BTII officials at an emergency meeting on Sunday in the conference room of the Cheapside Market at 3 p.m.The long-time vendor said this week’s move appeared to be a project done in hindsight.She said it sometimes appeared that persons in bureaucratic circles wanted them to fix their own problems when it came to placement in Bridgetown. “Those in charge would prefer us to take the problem elsewhere, fix it, and bring it back ready. We’ve heard talk from every successive political party, and yet we still don’t have a permanent home. We don’t want to be swept under the carpet. We have a contribution to make to Barbados.”Lorne added: “People out there feel all we do is complain about being moved, but that’s not the case. We want a home where we can properly, and professionally do what we have to do.”Another vendor, Priscilla Lora, commented: “We are very disappointed with this latest move. The place a little too small to accommodate all the vendors. We need proper shelter, and with proper drainage.”