PORT of Spain Mayor Joel Martinez said if J’Ouvert masqueraders do not desist from defacing people’s property, the city will have to implement a measure to charge bands for cleaning up.
He was speaking on Ash Wednesday at a media conference held at City Hall.
He said there was a consultation with Woodbrook residents and Carnival stakeholders prior to Carnival and there was an appeal to bands not to deface private property. He said, however, he has received reports of incidents and photos from Woodbrook residents, specifically the smearing of paint and other material and writing on walls. He said he did not have an exact number of incidents but he expected to find that out soon.
Martinez said he also expected the residents would make a presentation to him or there will be some conversation. “I want to reach out to them and I want to be able to assist them in their plight.” He also appealed to citizens to be responsible and to understand it is personal property.
“You can enjoy Carnival, you can enjoy J’Ouvert without destroying anything. It is really about having a merry time and having a wonderful opportunity to revel on the street. But you have to also take into consideration there is a responsibility attached to it. You wouldn’t want it to be done to your home so don’t do it to another person’s home.”
Residents of Woodbrook took to social media on Carnival Monday to express their frustration over what they described as one of the worst J’Ouvert celebrations yet as they were awakened from their beds with loud music and their vehicles smothered in paint by revellers.