Concerned by the ‘Looky Looky’ epidemic that is currently sweeping Cabo Roig, still with no sign of action by either the government, the Local Police or the Guardia Civil, members of the Cabo Roig Strip Business Association attended the Emergency Plenary held in the Orihuela Town Hall on Monday where they appealed for the authorities to take action.
However their demands fell very much on deaf ears as they were refused permission to table their motion requesting urgent action from the council. As the meeting was an Emergency Plenary and called only to deal with council salaries and appointments it was deemed not to be a regular council assembly, and as such the group was told that it was not in a position to take questions or submissions.
Although the mayor was introduced to members of the Business Association on their arrival, promising further discussion at the end of the meeting, the subsequent defeat of his motion saw him leave the council chamber without any further discussion taking place.
However, Association Spokesman Pedro Mancebo was able to speak at length when interviewed by local tv and radio channels. He expanded on the problems faced by Cabo Roig traders on a daily basis which is likely to heap even more pressure on the authorities to resolve the problem.
On the Cabo Roig strip itself many of the restranteurs and business owners were advised by the Local Police to expand their terraces, adding additional tables and chairs on the areas immediately outside their establishments, thereby denying space to the ‘looky looky’ men.
Staff in the Chinese supermarkets were told to display additional stock dumpbins and carousels across from their stores but no sooner had they done so than a group of the illegal manteros physically threw the containers back across the pavement and onto the Chinese forecourts, after which they calmly laid down their blankest, displayed their wares and continued with their illegal trade.
Needless to say the police were not on hand to deal with the matter, which once again they have chosen to ignore, having first issued dubious advice which could have resulted in a major confrontation between the two divisions.
Two Police officers do often patrol the Cabo Roig Strip during the early evening, usually seeking the easy option of fining illegally parked cars, and during which time the materos sit in the adjoining alleys or on the N332 bridge, but no sooner do the officers leave than the ‘looky looky’ men return, remaining with their illegal goods and their drugs in increasing numbers until the early hours of the morning.
It is understood that the Association will continue in their efforts with at least dozen business owners submitting denuncia’s on the manteros to the Local Police in the last week alone. A spokesman told the Leader that the group also still intends to submit it’s question to the full Orihuela council which it will now do at the next Plenary Meeting.
Meanwhile in Torrevieja, where the problem of illegal vendors is also back on the city streets once again, the Local Police have authorised overtime payments to six officers who will patrol the seafront every night from 10pm to 2 am, an outlay of 700 euros a day.
Previously the manteros would have been dealt with by the GRO, the Police Reinforcement Group originally set up in 2012 for this specific purpose, but the number of officers in the group has dwindled significantly in recent years and is said to no longer be able to deal with the problem.
If they do resolve the problem, however, the vendors will simply move south along the coastline to Cabo Roig where their problems will be exacerbated even more.