Road toll deemed ‘money-grabbing’

Wednesday April 18, 2018 Published in Letters to the Editor
The controversial toll road to Papua falls (Wigmore’s Waterfall) has surprised many visitors to the island since it was introduced in 2017. This photo was taken last year as a pair of tourists ignored signs saying the road was closed and walked to the falls anyway. 18041807 The controversial toll road to Papua falls (Wigmore’s Waterfall) has surprised many visitors to the island since it was introduced in 2017. This photo was taken last year as a pair of tourists ignored signs saying the road was closed and walked to the falls anyway. 18041807

In March my family were holidaying in Rarotonga. I was very surprised to find that we had to pay a $5 toll every time we drove down the road to Wigmore’s Waterfall (there is a $2 charge per walker).

We have visited the Cook Islands many times and this is the first time this has happened.

The toll keeper told me that the landowners were charging this fee to repair the road. My understanding is that the road was built by the Cook Islands government. Therefore surely they should be maintaining it?

Judging from the number of walkers and vehicles using the road to Wigmore’s waterfall the land owners are making a very good profit. The Cook Islands SPCA told me that as part of the fees arrangement half the toll would be paid to the SPCA. However, the SPCA have not received a cent they tell me, nor is there evidence of any road repair. It is not cheap to holiday in Rarotonga and this kind of money-grabbing activity is disincentive to visit.

            Yours sincerely,

            Graham Ford

1 comment

  • Comment Link leonaustin@gmail.com Saturday, 02 June 2018 16:08 posted by leonaustin@gmail.com

    That's disgusting. Public road isn't it? Are these the same people who charge $5 to look around the old hotel site?

Leave a comment