Piped wa­ter, at last

Jamaica Gleaner - - SPORTS - Jjo­van..jjohn­son@gl­lean­er­jjm..com

MEM­BER OF PAR­LIA­MENT: Franklyn Wit­ter CON­STITUENCY: St El­iz­a­beth South Eastern

FRANKLYN WIT­TER opened his de­bate con­tri­bu­tion, claim­ing that the Es­sex Val­ley wa­ter project that started in 2009 un­der the then Bruce Gold­ing ad­min­is­tra­tion was halted dur­ing the last four years of the Por­tia Simp­son Miller ad­min­is­tra­tion.

“Oh Lord!” Robert Pick­ers­gill, the wa­ter min­is­ter un­der the Simp­son Miller ad­min­is­tra­tion, dis­mis­sively said at Wit­ter’s claims about the project that’s ex­pected to ben­e­fit about 14,000 per­sons.

Wit­ter con­tin­ued, how­ever, say­ing: “We of­ten say that wa­ter is life and, there­fore, I was very dis­ap­pointed that such an im­por­tant project was never a pri­or­ity between 2012 and 2015. I am pleased to an­nounce to­day that af­ter four years of ne­glect, the South East St El­iz­a­beth Es­sex Val­ley Do­mes­tic Wa­ter Project has been re­vived.”

Wit­ter told the House that since March, a month af­ter his elec­tion, eight kilo­me­tres of pip­ing has been laid, com­plet­ing phase one of the project.

In 2015, Pick­ers­gill an­nounced in Par­lia­ment that work was to con­tinue on the project, but it ap­peared not much was done as Ho­race Chang, the Gov­ern­ment’s voice on wa­ter, said in July con­tracts re­lat­ing to the $90 mil­lion project were to be ten­dered.

Mean­while, the Ja­maica Labour Party MP said close to $10 mil­lion, or half of his $20 mil­lion Con­stituency De­vel­op­ment Fund al­lo­ca­tion, has

WIT­TER

been bud­geted for the main­te­nance of the road net­work in the con­stituency.

“As one of the largest farm­ing com­mu­ni­ties in Ja­maica, I think that we must have rea­son­ably good roads in or­der for the farm­ers to mar­ket their pro­duce,” he said.

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