A protest demanding the “immediate suspension” of the A22 highway tolls has been scheduled for December 8 by the Algarve’s anti-toll group CUVI.
The tolls have been in place for four years, but the group says it is just as “motivated” as ever to end what it considers are “illegal and unfair tolls”.
“There is renewed hope now that a new government is being formed,” CUVI member José Domingos told Lusa news agency.
Socialist MPs António Eusébio and José Apolinário came together with Left Bloc MP and CUVI founder José Vasconcelos at the group’s latest meeting last weekend.
While the Left Bloc wants the tolls abolished once and for all, the Socialists defend a 50% price reduction.
“What’s truly important is finding a fair solution that doesn’t penalize the Algarve’s population and businesses,” Domingos explained, pointing out that along with the negative impact that the tolls have had on the region’s economy, they have also been blamed for the spike in fatalities on the Algarve’s “road of death”, the EN125.
“Between January 1 and October 21 this year there have been 7,943 accidents that killed 32 people – 12 more than in 2014 and 15 more than in 2013,” said Domingos, stressing the government “cannot look away from this tragedy”.