By *Jeshua Bardoo
One day while I was traveling in a van in the afternoon in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, I witnessed something very disturbing.
I was minding my own business when I noticed the van stopped in Villa to pick up what appeared to be a white male and a white female tourist.
Upon stopping in Arnos Vale, the tourists got out of the van and the male tourist gave the driver $20. However, I saw that the male tourist was only given back $10.
Now, Vincentians reading this article may know that it does not (at least not currently) cost $10 for two people to travel by van from Villa to Arnos Vale.
Some of the passengers in the van noticed this and called out the driver and/or conductor for their actions but instead of doing the right thing, the passengers were cursed out.
I am very ashamed of what I witnessed, and I cannot stay silent. It is not right.
As Vincentians, we must not steal from or unreasonably overcharge tourists who visit our shores for business or pleasure. When we do this, we leave a bad impression, and this discourages other persons from coming to SVG.
If we want to advertise our country as a tourist destination, we must lift our standards higher. We already have enough social, and human rights issues plaguing this country that could and do discourage persons from coming to SVG. Let us not add to the list by stealing from or unreasonably overcharging tourists! STOP IT!
*Jeshua Bardoo is a Vincentian barrister-at-law and solicitor. He is also the President of Equal Rights, Access and Opportunities SVG Inc. He can be contacted via email at [email protected].
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