I recently experienced something that is troubling to me.
I took a taxi from the Waterfront in Road Town going to a destination last Thursday.
When the taxi got to Crafts Alive, a young Hispanic gentleman stopped the taxi driver and said he would like to be taken to the Immigration department.
The driver told him he wasn’t going that route but if he takes him there, it will be $5. The young man said ‘yes’ and came into the taxi.
I was sitting in the back of the taxi van behind the driver so the gentleman turned around and he said good morning to me and I said good morning back to him and we went on our way.
When the taxi got to the Immigration area and stopped for him to get out, I noticed he had some papers. By the looks of the papers, it seems he was just coming into to the territory. He was pushing the papers he had towards the driver and I guess the money was underneath.
When the taxi driver picked up the money, it was only $1. The driver shouted: ‘What is this? What is this?’ But the gentleman continued going towards Immigration — he never looked back.
That dishonesty in that young man is telling me something. It’s telling me there is more to it and I’m very concerned.
At a time like this when the BVI is vulnerable because it is still in the recovery phase, I think Immigration, Customs, police and all the local law enforcement agencies need to heighten their mechanisms in the way they screen applicants coming into the territory.
I am not being racist or biased but we have enough of our own criminals to deal with and I think contractors and other businesses should be very careful of who they are recruiting an importing into this territory to work.
There are some friends and families who will be referring others to come into the territory and they know full well they are troublemakers.
I know we have to rebuild and I am not against importing labour into the territory because we don’t have enough people here to work but this is a time where I am seeing social ills will be on the rise.
I would like everybody in the territory to be more alert because I don’t have a good feeling and there are others who are in the same situation and we don’t need it. We are too small for that.
What if the taxi driver had come out and gone after the young man? Who knows what would have happened.
There are other situations that will come about simply because there are different cultures coming into the BVI and not everybody is going to be alike and it is troubling.
I don’t think its the first and I don’t think it will be the last.
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