News

Hope Pastures residents cry for water

BY KIMMO MATTHEWS Observer staff reporter matthewsk@jamaicaobserver.com

Tuesday, May 20, 2014    

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A group of Hope Pastures residents in upper St Andrew yesterday ran out of patience as they lashed the National Water Commission (NWC) for what they claimed was a neglect of their community in the provision of water.

The irate residents told the Jamaica Observer that for years they have been forced to grapple with a major water problem that sees them sometimes going for weeks without the commodity.

According to the residents, while the community is "robbed" of a regular water supply, thousands of gallons from a storage tank in the community run to waste daily on Forsythe Drive, which they said the NWC has failed to address.

"The problem that we continue to face in this community needs urgent attention; how can this be allowed to happen," said Lascelle Samms, a resident of Hope Pastures.

"We are fed up, we don't know what else to do; each day we are being reminded of water shortage, and sometimes forced to go for weeks without water, but at the same time we have to watch as millions of dollars worth of the commodity literally goes down the drain," said a relative of Samms.

The residents say frequent calls for the NWC to address the problem have been met with little or no action.

"We were told that the NWC tank that collects and stores water needs to be repaired," said Samms. "I have been living in their community for more than 30 years and have raised this concern with the NWC on numerous occasions and we are yet to see the problem being addressed. All we can hear is that it needs a valve," he added.

Keith Miller, another resident, said he was disappointed in the way the water commisison has been dealing with the problem. "This is something we continue to raise concern about and we are disappointed that, despite the many complaints, we are yet to get a positive feedback," said Miller.

Nadine McKenzie, another resident, said that not only has the frequent water lock-offs made life uncomfortable, but residents were forced to spend large sums to purchase the commodity, especially during the drought period.

Efforts to get a reaction from the NWC about the problem were unsuccessful up to press time.

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