The minibuses were hired to transport persons to ULP election rallies, including this one at Argyle on Dec. 6, 2015.

The ruling Unity Labour Party (ULP) has confirmed that it is yet to pay some owners of minibus for services they provided to the party transporting persons to campaign events for the Dec.9 general elections.’

One of the van owners, who asked not to be identified in this story, complained to iWitness News on Thursday, saying tat he hopes that by going to the media, the party would act swiftly to settle the EC$2,500 bill it has with him, as well as monies owed to other omnibus owners and truckers.

“During the election, my van was contacted to transport people from the South Leeward and Central Leeward constituencies and we had been transporting people from the night election was called and up until today, we have not been paid. It is not my van alone but a lot of other vans throughout the country,” the van owner told iWitness News.

He said that van owners owed by the ULP have been contacting the party asking about payment.

“We have been asking both the candidates and the party headquarters — where we normally would get paid — and it’s bare run around we’ve been getting — from the ladies at the office, who says it’s beyond their control, and also the candidates, who say they have been asking about payments and they have not been forthcoming.

The van owner said that his minivan was used to transport persons to different areas across the country.

“From Kingstown, to Arnos Vale, to Calliaqua, to Argyle at the international airport site — different places. On the Leeward side, we did one in Campden Park; we did one in Barrouallie,” the van owner told iWitness News.

“And we have not been paid for most of the trips.”

He said that the ULP had persons in different constituencies who were in charge of hiring minibuses.

“And then these people would take our information back to the constituency office and the constituency office would forward the names of drivers, the minivans, how many trips they took to the ULP main office and then we would normally pass in at the main office and then they would pay us from there, based on the information they receive.”

The owner told iWitness News that it is the first time he had provided election campaign transport services for the ULP.

“But a lot of van drivers decided that they weren’t going to do it this election, based on what happened in previous elections. But this is actually my first election transporting people for them, but it is real problematic to get your monies.

He told iWitness News he is owed in excess of EC$2,500.

“And that is just one van. The truck owners who had systems on their trucks, they are also faced with the same problem. From what I have been told by minibus drivers, one candidate is starting to pay vans out of his own personal expenses. So, the rest of us just have to sit back and wait.

“And it’s really overbearing because two months have gone since elections and it is bare run around because nobody is even giving us a date or a time. When we call the ULP headquarters the ladies are saying it is out of their hands, they don’t know how soon; they can’t give us any information as to how soon we would be paid and we should just hang in there and hold the faith.

“But it’s really, really ridiculous because vans don’t run on water. Minibuses come with daily expenses,” the driver told iWitness News.

iWitness News visited the ULP headquarters on Tuesday and a woman at the front desk asked for the name of the minibus owner who had complained to iWitness News.

iWitness News said that the owner does not want his identity revealed.

“So then, if his identity can’t be revealed, how would I know if that person got paid or not?” the woman asked.

“Well, he says he is not the only person,” iWitness News responded.

“We have some outstanding payments, but it just means that if I don’t know [who the person is], I can’t just go on the computer and check to see if whosoever got paid,” the woman responded.

She, however, said that she has no indication of when the outstanding payments would be made.

12 replies on “Owners complain — ULP yet to pay vans for election campaign services”

  1. 1. Ask Ralph.

    2. Own de campaign.

    3. Election finish; move on.

    4. Ask not what your Party can do for you. Ask what you can do for your Party.

  2. stupid people deserve all they are served up by the wicked ULP who gave away the government building materials, perhaps the drivers would accept some stolen roofing galvanize instead of the cash?

  3. These drivers are doing the right thing by going to the media. They should not turn out to be “useful idiots” like so many others. In fact all those that voted for the ULP (Ralph) are useful idiots. Ralph has promised tens-of-thousands of jobs and a new Kingstown in Arnos Vale and to make new roads and repave all the other roads greater than ever in the country’s history.
    He has promised all these jobs since before the year 2000, now we have 2016. He even mentioned how the roads under Mitchel were a disgrace. There is a long list of how Ralph has lied to us and used us, and yet enough people seem to continue to vote for him. He probably will start building a new town and marina…that we and future children of SVG will have to pay hundreds of years for.

    I predict that Ralph will soon pay these people just in case there may be a new election. It cannot be the same as all other elections where Ralph showers the people with what looks like an endless supply of money and then, as if by magic all the money is gone after the election. Just don’t look for more than a few jobs and certainly do not look for many new roads or road repairs. Education has been cut by 60% and soon you can expect either more borrowing and/or taxes.

  4. Jeannine James says:

    I guess the lady at the office saw i-Witness News as having come on a van driver’s behalf to collect. I am sure she had no intention of having disciplinary measures brought against the complainant. Lucky guy, the complainant.

  5. If you say that you “don’t know when outstanding payments will be made” you presumably know that there are outstanding payments. So why do you need to know who spoke to the media? There is no need to confirm that the individual who spoke with IWN was not paid. Whether she likes it or not the person to whom IWN spoke has confirmed that the story is true. People have not been paid for work done and no one can say when they will be paid.

    1. There are also hundreds of ULP voters who gave their orders to their ULP constituency office, got a completed official order for them to be able to collect their galvanize lumber and cement and still have not got it and I doubt the ever will.

      There were also a number of van drivers never ever got paid from the 2010 elections, when will the ever learn.

      The ULP brought dozens of music artists here and paid out millions of dollars, but will not pay the drivers.

  6. Here is the problem: The driver/owner should not be afraid to demand his money and even give his name. This is typical in SVG and folks just keep taking the abuse and saying nothing.

  7. This story is fake because-If the ULP MAKE AN AGREEMENT WITH YOU, SURE AS THE SUN WILL RISE TOMORROW, YOU KNOW,THEY WILL HONOR THAT AGREEMENT.

    This story is fake because- If the ULP say they WILL COMPLETE A PROJECT ON A SAID DATE, BET YOUR HOUSE AND WIFE, YOU KNOW THEY WILL COMPLETE THE PROJECT ON THAT DATE.

    This story is fake because-If the ULP say, the VOICE ON A SEX TAPE IS NOT ONE OF THEIR OWN PEOPLE, YOU KNOW THAT IS THE GOSPEL TRUTH.

    This story is fake because-If the ULP say,THERE IS NOTHING WRONG IN GIVING REASSURING KISSES AT 4 AM; YOU KNOW ITS SAFE TO SEND YOUR DAUGHTERS TO THEIR OFFICES.

    This story is fake because-When the ULP say “we seek to deepen democracy, protect and defend individuals rights and freedoms, make sure that there is justice and equity in the lives of our people and to make certain that individual enterprise gets rewards and, at the same time, we must have an equality of opportunity for every single Vincentian.”…YOU KNOW THEY MEANT EVERY WORD…JUST ASK BIGGER BIGGS.

    1. Yeah right! Ralph said in 2000 he would fix Kingstown. Did he? Ralph Gonsalves said he would give the teachers a 30% pay raise. Did he?

      Half of SVG can come op with about 100 promises from Ralph. Did he keep them…NO! Ralph is in office for “Ralph and co” At important times he throws out some crumbs for the people in his “let them eat cake” politics. You would be shocked to hear how much money Ralph spends on Ralph each year!!!

  8. I find that I want to sympathize with the drivers who find themselves in this predicament. I tell myself that this is a very small country with limited employment, that the van owners are trying to make a decent living in hard times, that they probably fear victimization if they don’t join the bandwagon. But then I remember the cross country road that we were promised. The sports stadium. The airport that was going to be ready in 2011,2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2 1/2 months from the beginning of last December (which, by the way, is now). And the “fact” that we had “all the funds” for said airports. Why should even the most desperate person believe that he would be paid promptly for work done? I am continually astonished by the credulity of our people.

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