Minister of Finance Dr Nigel Clarke in his 2019 budget presentation in Parliament announced approval for the purchase of 100 new trucks for the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA). This was, however, aborted due to the onset of the novel coronavirus pandemic in 2020.
In 2021 Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Desmond McKenzie "requested a costing for 50 more trucks". ('NSWMA seeks at least 50 more garbage trucks', Jamaica Observer, September 14, 2021)
Since then the people of Jamaica have been bombarded with a plethora of headlines, to include:
•'Arrival date for new garbage trucks uncertain' (The Gleaner, January 25, 2022)
•'NSWMA to get 50 compactor trucks' (The Gleaner, February 23, 2022)
•'New garbage trucks to begin arriving by year end — McKenzie' (Loop Jamaica, March 5, 2022)
•'NSWMA to get new garbage trucks by year end' (Jamaica Observer, June 10, 2022)
•'50 new garbage trucks coming to Jamaica soon, says PM' (The Gleaner, July 18, 2022).
•'Plans advanced for purchase of additional trucks — McKenzie' (The Gleaner, July 22, 2022)
•'New trucks coming in five weeks to ease garbage pile-up' (The Gleaner, September 27, 2022).
•'New garbage trucks to arrive shortly' (The Gleaner, October 12, 2022)
In a 2022 Jamaica Labour Party Area Council One meeting Desmond Mckenzie announced that "in a matter of weeks 50 trucks will arrive in the island to help alleviate the problem [that is, pile-up of garbage]". He even said, "I am pleased to announce to Area Council One that last night I was sent a video of the 50 new garbage trucks being driven on to a ship to be shipped to Jamaica over the next couple of weeks." ('Mckenzie promises garbage relief'. (Jamaica Observer, October 3, 2022)
On November 8, 2022 Finance Minister Nigel Clarke finally allocated money for the purchase of the garbage trucks in the First Supplementary Estimates 2022/2023 tabled in the Parliament. ('Gov't proposing approximately $60-billion increase in National Budget', The Gleaner, November 8, 2022).
We now await these trucks, hoping that we have moved beyond the talk and not heard too much "talkin blues".
Dudley McLean II