Letters to the Editor

Some people still hurt after Hurricane Ivan

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

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Dear Editor,

In the community of Portland Cottage, Clarendon, there is a vexing and alarming situation that needs to be remedied. Some victims of Hurricane Ivan still don't know who or where to turn for help.

The failure to sufficiently help has shone the light on those who are charged with the various responsibilities.

Years ago, when Hurricane Ivan devastated a section of the low land of Portland Cottage, a housing scheme dubbed “Shearer's Heights” was built on prime real estate to relocate Ivan's victims. This site offers a great view into West Harbour and the sea to Old Harbour, St Catherine, and beyond. The houses were built on lots and handed over with stipulations.

It is alleged that many who got houses did not suffer any loss. Some of the recipients were from far outside the area.

Alvin John, a local who suffered the most, was told that he would have to wait for his bigger house in “Phase Two” to be built.

Fast-forward to today. Many who got houses have improved them and they are now worth millions. Some lots have changed ownership. What about the stipulations? What about the taxes?

Johnson is now renting a one-room in the same housing scheme. He still has not received a word about when he will ever get the house he was promised in “Phase Two”. There are rumours, but what is the truth?

The responsible arm of government must act now and have the relevant agencies work to put these people (the new and old owners) on the tax roll and to ensure that the stipulations for getting these houses and the land in the Shearer Heights housing scheme are enforced.

Authnel S Reid


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