Whether you ask a vendor, the layman, businesspersons or any individual residing in Orange Walk Town their sentiments towards the towns road infrastructure will be the same. Since the incumbent town council took office, the pleas and cries from residents to Central Government have gone on deaf ears. It was one of their biggest promises made to Orange Walkenos in their manifesto and today the dilapidated streets is at its worse condition despite the councils efforts to maintain them.
But if we talk about streets, it is not only those that fall under the council’s jurisdiction that are in deplorable conditions. So is the pot hole ridden Philip Goldson Highway, especially the portion that runs through Orange Walk Town. But the effect goes beyond mounting mechanic bills because according to the Belize Tourism Industry Association Orange Walk Chapter, the bad condition of the highway is causing a trickling financial loss across the board. In that light, the association lashed out at the Government in the form of the press release on urgent repairs to the Towns roads. Lourdes Saldivar, interim Vice President of the Association expressed much discontentment and frustration in relation of the streets of Orange Walk Town.
Lourdes Saldivar – Interim Vice President, BTIA OW
“I think Orange Walk people and Belizeans have come to a point when it is a bit difficult to believe, you know especially when politicians are promising and so it is with scepticism that we are looking at this where the government is saying yes they will help to get the roads fix and why we look at it that way it is because it has been shown in our history it is difficult sometimes to get things done especially when for example we have what you call a PUP town council and then we have the government being of the UDP party so I believe that we will keep an eye open and precisely looking at what the government is saying they will do and we won’t be satisfied until the road is actually fix and when I say fix I don’t people want to see a patch work it definitely affect tourism and it not only for the tour operators or the tour guides and the tourist that come but we think that tourism is for everyone and just simply going out in my case when I work I need to go and deliver my product it is difficult to find what street should I go because it then damages your vehicle and it is not only me but everybody who rides in our town and another thing that is affecting we are seeing visitors are not passing through or people that come from Benque even Corozal, Belmopan or any area they would rather take the bypass and so it is affecting businesses so individuals with their vehicle their business and on a whole the industry of business, tourism in particular but and our health as well because of our streets are so bad especially when it is dusty that is when a lot of children get sick and so looking at it financially it is affecting all of us here in town.”
A petition drive to show discontentment will be launched where residents of all ages are encouraged to sign. The petition sheets can be found at the Tourism Information Centre at the Central Park.