Articles

Fri 7th Oct 2016

White migrants’ tax exemptions causing poverty and increasing flood damage

According to the Leader of SVG Green Party, Mr Ivan O’Neal BSc (hons), MSc, MBA, aerial photographs taken by Trinidad and Tobago military helicopters in SVG in previous floods, have revealed conclusively that large parts of our rainforest are being chopped down.

The consequence of the white migrants in Mustique and Canouan not paying tax and customs duty is that our economy is being pushed in to the ground. This leads to high levels of poverty and unemployment. As a means of survival, many people chop down trees to get firewood to cook food and also to make coals to sell to earn a dollar.

The rainforest is becoming sparse, and when SVG gets relatively heavy rain, the rainforest cannot hold the rain water as well. Consequently, the run-off is sudden, heavy and fast, and this leads to rivers overflowing their banks, causing much damage to the living environment downstream.

The weaker the economy is, the greater the level of poverty is in SVG and the greater is the amount of rainforest chopped down and, therefore, the greater is the amount of damage caused by heavy rain.

To preserve the rainforest, we need to reduce poverty and reduce unemployment, so that households have enough money to feed their family and pay their bills. To do this, SVG needs to create a fair tax system, whereby Taiwan and the white migrants of Mustique and Canouan pay tax. This could bring in $3 billion in revenue annually.

SVG is becoming like Haiti and our watersheds are under serious threat of being permanently destroyed. If we fail to create a fair tax system, our rainforest will be wiped out. Our water comes from precipitation in our rainforest, and it is likely the flow of our drinking water will dry up over time.

Without a canopy on our rainforest to preserve the precipitation of water, we will all suffer. SVG has a run-off type of soil and it is very difficult to dig wells in SVG to find water. We must act immediately and stop our rainforest from being cut down further. We must plant more trees. We cannot wait until there is no water running in the pipes in our homes before we take action.

SVG is under serious threat of being destroyed by the ULP regime’s gross incompetence in managing the public accounts and giving away billions of dollars in tax and customs duty exemptions to the white migrants of Mustique and Canouan and receiving no fish tax from Taiwan.

Water is life. The risk of killing the rainforest and losing our fresh, clean drinking water is real and significant. To create wealth for our people and save our rainforest and water, we must immediately tax Taiwan and the white migrants of Mustique and Canouan.

The aerial photos taken by the Trinidad and Tobago military are a wake-up call for us to take action now. We must use our common sense and knowledge to plan for long-term sustainable development for the present and future generations of SVG. We need a fair tax system.

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