Anti-tolls group A22 Users’ Commission has vowed “not to lay down arms” against the government measure to introduce charges on the A22 from December 8 last year.
Led by the fact that the Algarve has no “safe alternative road” to the A22 and that tolls have added further grief to businesses already affected by an economic crisis, the commission says it will not give up its fight.
It says tourism and commerce have been hit badly since the implementation of charges on the A22 particularly because the Spanish, one of our main tourist markets, have started turning their backs on the Algarve, something the commission fears will lead to higher unemployment rates and the closing down of more businesses.
“People from all walks of life are being affected, from students, teachers, entrepreneurs and any citizen who needs to use the A22 on a daily basis,” said a spokesman for the commission.
“The Algarve population is faced with a social and economic regression and is not accepting it. The fight is on – we want the tolls to be suspended.”
Motions for the suspension of tolls on the A22 have been approved at municipal assemblies across the Algarve and even the Alentejo, such as Faro, Loulé, Lagos, Lagoa, Olhão, Portimão and Ourique.
A new petition has also been started by the commission and can be found at the following link: http://www.peticaopublica.com/PeticaoVer.aspx?pi=P2011N18627.
At the time of going to press on Wednesday, it had around 3,850 signatures and the commission aims to collect the 100,000.
A 14,000-signature petition last year was rejected in Parliament in October.
Tomorrow (Saturday) from 9.30am, the commission will be at the Loulé Municipal Market to collect signatures, and from 3.30pm there will be a public meeting at Restaurante Austrália at Vale da Venda, on the road into Faro.