Armed with close to 10,000 signatures, the grouping “Cayman Is Fed Up With High Gas Prices” is ready to march, declared committee organiser George Ebanks on the eve of major protest action planned for George Town.
“The committee wants to remind one and all that this matter affects all of us on all three islands,” said Mr Ebanks in a statement to Cayman Weekly. He added that if government is able to force fuel importers and their retail outlets to sell at “realistic and fair” prices, every other financial aspect should follow suit.
“In other words, there is a trickle down benefit to our lives once we tell the monopolies on gas prices ‘we’ve had enough’. Thus, the committee is imploring every able citizen to stand up and make their collective voices heard,” he added.
On Wednesday morning (14 October), Mr Ebanks and other members of the committee plan to show their frustration with how much motorists pay at the pumps by marching from the lawns of the old Glass House on Elgin Avenue towards Albert Panton Street and to the steps of the Legislative Assembly. Once there, it is expected that they will be met by Premier Alden McLaughlin, other Cabinet Ministers and members of the Legislative Assembly.
The march is scheduled to begin at 9:00 a.m. and be wrapped up by 10:45 a.m. Free public bus transportation from all districts on Grand Cayman into George Town has been arranged by the organisers of the march.
Planning and Infrastructure Minister Kurt Tibbetts is due to table legislation on Wednesday geared toward greater transparency from fuel importers on how they price fuel for the Cayman Islands market. Mr Ebanks still feels the public needs to let its collective voice be heard.
“With continued public pressure applied to government, the committee is very confident that this will give the support needed by government, via the Petroleum Inspectorate, to pressure the fuel importers to sell their fuel at market driven prices to the various retail outlets, this achieving a real cost reduction for the entire Cayman Islands,” Mr. Ebanks said.
“The committee is most confident that once government can uncover the actual landed cost of all fuels being imported into these islands that by late October and at the latest November, 2015, the people of these islands will receive and ‘early Christmas bonus’ by way of realistic and reasonable and market driven fuel prices.”
Mr Ebanks expressed confidence that by the end of Wednesday, they would have exceeded 10,000 signatures and be “well within range” of the target of 15,000 that he has been aiming for.
However, he continues to appeal for other people to sign. “Anyone who still has not signed the low gas price petition, the form is available online at Facebook page ‘Cayman Is Fed Up With High Gas Prices’. Alternatively, forms can be emailed by anyone by sending an email request to firstname.lastname@example.org.”