MINISTER UNDERLINES EFFORTS TO CURB DRAINAGE PROBLEMS

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Staff of the Drainage Unit and Sanitation Authority listen attentively to Minister of the Environment, Dr. Denis Lowe.

The Drainage Division of the Ministry of the Environment has given itself a strict time-table to address the drainage problems currently facing the island.

According to Minister of the Environment, Water Resources and Drainage, Dr. Denis Lowe, the initial goal is to make significant headway by June of this year to ensure that niggling problems are alleviated by the height of the rainy season.

The Minister’s disclosure came during a recent meeting with management and supervisory staff from the Division and the Sanitation Service Authority, where he updated them on his vision for the Ministry and the work ahead, as well as heard first hand their concerns and challenges.

Dr. Lowe noted that in addition to work in the field, the Division had commenced work on two major projects at Holetown, St. James and Brathwaithe’s Gap, St. Michael, estimated to cost some $1.2 million.

“From reports they are continuing in good pace. The Division has an estimated six months in which to complete the programme and I am calling on them to ensure that the projects come in on time and within budget,” he stressed.

Minister Lowe said he was anxiously looking forward to moving around the country and improving the facilities and conditions under which staff worked. Pointing out that the Ministry was currently in “transition” he said efforts were on stream to ensure that wherever possible the Drainage Division could eventually have its own depots around the country, as opposed to sharing resources with other departments.

Concomitantly the Minister highlighted the major responsibility which the Division would have to shoulder.

“Your work is going to be driven largely by new technologies which you will have to utilise…it is not simply about keeping wells clean, but engaging staff and leaders in helping us to understand what we need to do to arrest the problem of flooding,” he underlined.

“Staff has a very tall order because come rainy season no place in Bridgetown must flood,” Dr. Lowe contended, highlighting the need to meet with both property owners and commercial entities to see how the issue can be addressed.

Minister Lowe announced plans to meet with the Division’s full staff compliment within the near future.

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