Land dispute threatens future of Danny's Marina

A land dispute is threatening the existence of Danny's Marina, a restaurant and bar that has been operating in Harbour View, St Andrew, for more than three decades.

The dispute sparked the temporary closure of the establishment on Thursday.

Despite numerous attempts by Danny Davis, owner of the business, to lease an adjoining piece of land used by his patrons as a parking lot, the property was instead leased to another party who has dumped dirt on the land.

Thursday morning as his staff sat or stood outside of the restaurant and bar, Davis complained, "Nobody is stopping here because dem dump up the car park and not even a notice dem give to seh dem going to dump it this morning."

He said he was given a notice by a law firm last week that a light pole would have to be uprooted from the property, but claimed nothing was said about his customers not being able to access the property.

"The business haffi go close temporarily because it is not even just about the car park, but the dust. Dem just dump up dirt and dust a kill we now — staff and everybody. Even right now mi skin full a dirt from the dust weh a blow. People come and drive weh because dem don't have parking and we don't even get a chance to put up a sign to say this is what it is. The staff sit down don't have nothing to do," Davis complained.

"I feel betrayed fi know mi a Jamaican, deh yah a struggle from nothing, from mi a likkle bwoy. All of this, a dump mi dump up da place yah. There was no land here and me dump it up and create this and then create employment. This is just total disrespect," Davis said.

He claimed to have written to Prime Minister Andrew Holness asking him to consider intervening, but to date had received no response.

"Mi a try reach out to Mr Holness. I even sent him a letter and got not even a response to say he got our letter but can't do anything about it. To me, it's just straight politics. We try, even without mother and father help, and wi reach yah so now and you waan come bruk wi back down now. Mi waan know wah wi fi turn to and what more should I do? I have to send home my staff because there is no parking and dem can't operate under the dust," he said.

"It hurt mi heart fi send home some people because at the end of the day people have their families to feed and their bills to pay. People live inna rent house and dem can't tell the landlord to wait. Landlord nuh business wid dat. No utility company nuh care. Dem nah wait. You can't tell the kids to wait until the boss open back the place den we eat."

Staff of Danny's Marina in Harbour View, St Andrew, stand outside the establishment on Thursday.
Danny Davis, owner of Danny's Marina, speaking with the Jamaica Observer on Thursday.

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