Complaint On The Up ; Condo In Chaos ; Monte Festival ; New Kennels On Porto Santo

Complaint On The Up ; Condo In Chaos ; Monte Festival ; New Kennels On Porto Santo 1

(10th August). Today’s main news headline : ’10 Complaints Per Day – The availability of the Complaints Book, more to hand, encourages the consumer to defend their rights, making more cases for Economic Activities’. 10 to 12 complaints a day are being made in the ‘Livro do Reclamações’, the complaints book that businesses are obliged to keep. In 2008 there were 1,940 complaints made and sent to the Regional Inspectorate for Economic Activities (IRAE) for processing, and they do not receive them all. The increase has come since the book was made mandatory for all suppliers of goods and services that have contact with the general public. A spokesman for IRAE admits the number of complaints is rising, but says "The increase does not mean that we are at a higher level of consumer dissatisfaction." Valentine Caldeira explains that, over the years, people are more aware of the fact that they can "really complain for any reason". Many complaints have no redress as they are mere declarations of dissatisfaction, such as poor service. It is in delivery of service that most complaints are made, followed by clothes shops and car repair workshops. In restaurants and such, the biggest complaint is about service or the small sizes of meals. As well as the IRAE, complaint management is undertaken separately for communications (ANACOM), transport, and banking. I think there are also different routes for public services, such as health care and local authorities. They were talking recently about making the complaints process ‘on line’ as well as on the actual business premises. You can imagine the chaos that would cause, the ability to complain in the safety of your own home without having to confront an employee.

‘Edifício Várzea Park Without Control – Hundreds of residents are discontent because there are  condominium owners who don’t pay their fees, preventing the normal services in a residential building, and creating a ‘deplorable situation’ in ordinary everyday life’. It’s just too big to manage. The building in São Martinho has about 300 apartments and no (effective?) condominium management. It’s the crisis on one hand, but also the lack of social cooperation, that is causing problems and dividing the community. Hundreds are unhappy with the management of the building, and with those who do not comply with their obligations, particularly those who do not pay. Last December for example, (due to lack of maintenance?) dozens of metal plates blew off of the roof and were hurled to the ground during a windy storm. That situation remains unresolved, with the prospect of the same happening again next time there are strong winds. The communal garage door is stuck open, and has been since January, with several incidents of theft and vandalism as a result, including two stolen cars, and the garage is now providing a haven for junkies. The door of the garbage store disappeared over a year ago. Several access doors have been pulled off by residents and used to make barbecues. One of the residents said "There are people who have stopped paying, and now others are thinking about doing the same as a form of protest". What a nightmare … 300 units, must be totally unmanageable, especially with a ineffective management company (Servibrava). I don’t think I would want to buy in a condominium again, nothing but problems, but if I did it would have to be a very small one. Just look at the size of this one in the centre of the front page photo!

‘Élvio Camacho Of ‘Flor do Mar’ For ‘Morangos’ – The Madeiran actor does well out there but doesn’t quit the TEF, despite the crisis’. The Teatro Experimental do Funchal (TEF) is presenting a new play in Porto Santo this week, and despite the cuts in the budgets and funding in culture, the organisation plods on cheerfully albeit now with less staff. Élvio, who plays ‘Father Miguel’ from São Vicente in the Madeira based TV serial ‘Flor do Mar’, will stay with TEF, and he believes that having a TV personality in the plays does draw bigger audiences. He will now play a mathematics teacher in the next series of ‘Morangos Com Açucar’, a national prime time teenager’s series, and much better and more sophisticated than programmes like Eastenders.

The day’s sport story : ‘Porto Lift The First Trophy Of The Season – FC Porto beat Paços de Ferreira (2 – 0) and achieve one more SuperCup’. This is the game between last seasons league winners Porto, and the Portugal Cup winners, also Porto, who couldn’t make it twice, so they played their victims in the cup final again. Not very imaginative really.

‘Parish Of Nossa Senhora do Monte Is Already In Festa’. The festivities of ‘Our Lady of Monte’ are already underway, with various religious events already been and gone, and more to come until Thursday. The big night is on Friday, the eve of the official festival date, probably the biggest festival gathering on Madeira. The Pilgrimage of Our Lady of Monte dates from the early days of colonization of the island. Friday night will see the traditional ‘barracas’ selling espetada and various traditional beverages, as well as modern and traditional singing and dancing all night long. On Saturday the 15th, after mass, the faithful will accompany the procession through the parish "to pay their promises". Lets hope its runs better this year than last when there were 6 stabbings in race related assaults as part of a large street brawl.

‘Festivals Of Summer Shouldn’t End In Tragedy – Emergencies hasn’t registered any increase in the increase in the number of alcoholic intoxications’. An appeal from the director of emergency services in Funchal Central Hospital (no doubt timed for the night of 7 festivals), to drink in moderation at a time when a high of extreme alcoholic intoxications and comas traditionally hit the hospital.

Complaint On The Up ; Condo In Chaos ; Monte Festival ; New Kennels On Porto Santo 3 ‘Porto Santo Will Have Kennels In October – The new structure is almost ready and will be inaugurated a little before the elections (5th October)‘. The new structure is costing around €840,000, and will home stray and abandoned cats as well as dogs. The building will contain an administration area, a veterinary area, and the space for the animals. Dogs will have 37 cages, including 4 for isolation, and 3 for pregnant bitches. Cats will have 16 spaces including two for isolation and two for expectant mothers. The old facility of Porto Santo is no longer, and by all accounts had terrible conditions, with reports of starving animals eating each other. "A black page that seems to be now at an end" says the Diário. Porto Santo actually has very few abandoned dogs compared with parts of Madeira.

In Portugal, Gripe A took an unwanted leap, when 49 new cases were registered between Saturday and Sunday afternoon, taking the national infection statistic up to 554. Of the new cases only 3 were ‘imported’, the rest were transmitted within Portugal. I know I do rabbit on about it a bit, but why don’t they report the current cases, otherwise we have no idea how bad the situation is day by day. Wouldn’t it be great for Madeira and for tourism to report when there are no current cases, instead of just notching up everything going back months?

2 thoughts on “Complaint On The Up ; Condo In Chaos ; Monte Festival ; New Kennels On Porto Santo”

  1. Ere wot’s your game? Nobody slags us orft – I saw yer dig – we can ‘ave strawberries an sugar ere see, Wimbolden! You’re messin with the Mitchells Der. I’ll get Grant to come back and ‘im an Fill will sort ya – arfter doing Archie in. I ain’t flippin’ messing abart – nobody slags of my Manor! Free drinks in the Queen Vic tonight if yer man enough!

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