On Friday the founder of the Do the Right Thing Pedestrian Crossing Safety Program, Philip “Fawda” Henry, weighed in on the plans of the City Council announced in the week to regulate buses out of the downtown area and particularly Albert Street. Commuters are already opposing the plan, but today Henry focused on the inadequate conditions of the bus stop at the corner of Regent Street West and East Canal.
Philip Henry – Social Activist:
Out here, right across from Mike’s Club, on the canal side here, where the Mayor and the Belize City Council have the bus shed for the Belize City citizens to come now to catch the bus from this location. On behalf of my program “Do The Right Thing – Pedestrian Crossing,” I stand in solidarity of all schools for the sake of safety. This location cannot be hosting a bus shed, for the fact that in the past year there were over three shooting incidents in this vicinity, where about two people have gotten killed out here. Also there’s a bunch of robberies [that have] occurred in this location. The bus must [be] placed back in the middle of the city, until the Belize City Council find a solution where to place these people.
According to Philip Henry on Friday morning there was a frightening incident which demonstrates the inconvenience of the area and additionally warns of a further danger with the bridge linking the Regent Street West and Canal side.
This morning there was a senior citizen, an 87 years old, who had left from Brodie’s location, and when he got to this location he collapsed. I called the ambulance [and] the ambulance was out here this morning to care for him. Not only that. There are also the children from all Primary Schools, their lives are in danger from falling into the river and drowning, [since] there are no railings on a part of the river there. There are children going all the way to the back of the river, and are playing at the edge of the river. [What] would the Belize City Council do if anyone fell into that river and drowned?
Philip Henry calls on City Hall to pay attention to the plight of citizens using the bus system.
The Mayor and the Belize City Council have to come up with a solution to find a bus shed, and place this bus stop somewhere where it’s suitable for the Belizean people. They have to take it back to the city, where there is nowhere else to place these people. There are hundreds of people posted out here and have nowhere to stand, but getting into the way of the traffic, and getting hit by vehicles. The Mayor of Belize City has to know what he is doing, [for] the fact that he will be responsible for hundred of Belizean residents’ lives.
The Council has not given a timeline for the phased roll-out of buses, large or otherwise, from the Albert Street area.