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Fri 21st Apr 2017

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Bequia people forced to pay Environmental Tax, but not white migrants in Mustique

According to an article in the newspaper by Dr Godwin Friday, since CWSA does not provide water to the island of Bequia, the people in Bequia are not charged the Environment tax on the CWSA bill, as they have no CWSA bill.

However, the ULP government had passed a new law which places an Environment tax on the VINLEC bill received by people in Bequia. The threat of disconnection from the VINLEC electricity supply is used to force the people on Bequia to now pay the Environment tax.

This new law is a clear attack on the people of Bequia by the ULP regime and illustrates their disrespect for these people. The attack is unnecessary and vindictive.

Every Friday, the white, super-rich migrants in Mustique send down from Mustique, on the Mustique boat, two large trucks full of Mustique garbage to go to the landfill at Diamond, in St Vincent.

These white, super-rich migrants in Mustique are getting the use of the landfill at Diamond free of charge. Why doesn’t the ULP regime invent another new law that imposes an Environment tax on the white, super-rich migrants in Mustique? The white, super-rich migrants in Mustique do not pay the Environmental Tax.

According to Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal BSc (Hons) MSc, MBA, Leader of SVG Green Party, it is clearly discriminatory that the ULP regime attacks the people of Bequia for the Environment tax, but turns a blind eye to the white, super-rich migrants in Mustique not paying the Environment tax.

In SVG, if you are white and super-rich you can avoid taxes. It is the poorer people in SVG who are overburdened by tax. A higher proportion of their household funds go on taxes. Poorer people are being pushed in to the ground and it is time this chain of tax segregation in our country is broken.

The people of Bequia and the wider Grenadines are being unfairly targeted by Gonsalves. Let us not forget the stupid dollar tax for entrance to the Grenadines wharf in 2003. This was another attack on the people of the Grenadines.

Rather than attacking the people of the Grenadines, Gonsalves should be helping them by buying a bulk water ship to supply hundreds of thousands of litres of fresh drinking water to the people in the Grenadines, during drought and dry periods, building a hospital in Union Island and building a secondary school in Canouan.

SVG Green Party is deeply concerned that Gonsalves’ biased taxation policies are putting a lot of pressure on Vincentians. With every new tax and tax rise, the pressure on society increases. Just like a pressure cooker, when the pressure becomes too much, something has to bust - that is the law of science.

Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal is making a strong call for positive thinking. Gonsalves should stop fooling around with this Environment tax, it is hurting our people and pushing poor households in to the ground. It is a gross injustice.

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