Potter’s Cay Dock sales drop in aftermath of murders
Potter’s Cay Dock vendors yesterday called on the government to intervene after two months of extremely slow business, which they blamed on new parking restrictions in the area.
Vendors said that after two murders took place at the dock earlier this year, there was increased police presence, and new parking restrictions. They said that the new parking was supposed to be a trial, but it now appears to be permanent.
President of the Potter’s Cay Dock Association Dominique Bowe said her business has not been open for over two weeks, because she and many others make enough only to pay for ice and fuel for their generators.
“No one is coming to our aid,” said Dwayne Bastian, owner of Tall Boy’s Conch Stand.
“Most of the stalls are closed. We had to get rid of employees. It’s just sad to see how Potter’s Cay Dock is right now, because with the parking zone, there’s no parking. There’s not adequate parking here on Potter’s Cay Dock.
“On the eastern side of Potter’s Cay Dock, you have [businesses], other various offices in the area that take up 85 percent of the parking lot.
“We’re facing a major challenge…people on Potter’s Cay Dock are going to have to go to social services in probably another week, because there is no money being made.
“Someone needs to stand with us and come to our aid.”
He added, “We have some vendors who sell seven beers in the space of two days. Seven beers. A man like me, a top conch salad maker in The Bahamas, I dropped from 150 to 200, 300 conch a day to 25 conch.”
Bastian said that while he believes the police presence is a benefit, they should allow customers to park as before.
“We don’t have a problem with the officers on the dock,” he said.
“…We want the officers, but at least allow the cars to park and then customers will come back in. We had murders on the dock before, and the murders that happen out here are isolated incidents.”
He argued that people who commit crimes on Potter’s Cay Dock often do not travel in vehicles, but rather on foot, and called for police to instead focus on pursuing those criminals instead of on parking at the dock.
“The police know who have ankle bracelets on their legs,” he said.
“They know who have gun on they waist.
“They know the bad boys. They know where they hang, so they need to target those places, not turn around and treat the small man as criminals.
“Right now we being treated as criminals, because no one at Potter’s Cay Dock is making any money right now.”
He added, “Plenty people working for ice and gas for generators. That’s all we working for right now.”
Bastian said he hopes Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis will hear the vendors’ concerns and have a meeting with them to determine a plan forward.
Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Leader Philip Brave Davis joined the call for action at the dock, as he led a media tour of the area.
“Under our watch, we decided that Potter’s Cay and the vendors here require to be upgraded,” he said.
“We tried to assist them.”
He added, “We have to pay attention to this, because this is part of the cultural attraction for Bahamians [that] we would expect tourists to want to be a part of and share in.”
Education: Virginia in Charlottesville, BA in Foreign Affairs and Spanish