Protests against gas hikes and minimum wage begin

Gas Protestors on Palau Street Feb. 21, 2012

In the past two months gas prices in Palau have increased three times already.  This week commuters are paying an average of $5.35 per gallon for regular unleaded gas and $5.62 per gallon for diesel. In response, Moses Uludong, Santy Asanuma, Gale Ngirmidol and Kirino Mekoll began protesting in downtown Koror against the gas hikes and calling on the OEK and President Toribiong to move forward on the bill to increase the minimum wage to three dollars an hour and to give employees fifty dollars a month for cost of living allowance.  Many small businesses are suffering such as taxi companies and local fishermen.  One taxi company that has been servicing Palau for the past 20 years had to shut its business down due to the major increase in fuel prices.  Another taxi company sold three vehicles and now only operates using one taxi cab.