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Water trucked to Whydah residents after protest

BY EVERARD OWEN Observer writer owene@jamaicaobserver.com

Tuesday, September 04, 2012 | 3:01 PM    

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ST MARGARET’S BAY, Portland — Parish authorities trucked water to desperate residents of Whydah in St Margaret’s Bay, Portland after they blocked the highway in the vicinity of the St Margaret’s Bay All Age School and the Cemetery early this morning.

The protest affected the flow of traffic and caused several delays to early morning commuters.

The irate residents took to the main road and blocked it about 5:00am with debris, which was cleared by the police about two hours later.

However, after the road was cleared protesters again blocked it in a back-and-forth with the police.

Students on their way to school were forced to forge a path through the maze of objects and motorists to carefully weave their way through.

Police on the scene called in reinforcement and the road was eventually cleared about 7:20am.

“We want bathe”, "Water we say” and “Water is Life” some of the placards read, as the residents voiced their disgust.

The protestors were calling on the National Water Commission (NWC) to restore their water supply or truck water to the community.

“Over two months now there is no water in the pipe. We have to walk over a mile and a half for water,” one protestor who identified herself as Cecile White told the Jamaica Observer.

“We are here protesting the lack of water for the past two months. They are saying they are having mechanical problems, we beg them to truck it and they say they will and still no water,” White complained.

“The children cannot go to school because if they don’t have water they cannot go and people cannot go to work either cause ‘water is life’ that is the slogan of Water Commission and still we not getting any water."

Regional manager for the NWC Anthony Cornwall, said a broken water main at Hope Bay and several other leaks in the community's water supply was the cause of the problem.

His explanation however fell on deaf ears as the protesters were determined to stand their ground until they were supplied with water.

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