JIS News

Minister of State in the Ministry of Housing, Transport, Water and Works, Dr. Fenton Ferguson has said that the government would be spending over $40 million to upgrade water systems in South East St. Catherine.
Dr. Ferguson who made the disclosure following a tour of the area yesterday (Oct. 13) told JIS News that there was a lot of work to be done in satisfying the water needs of residents living in this area of the parish. “Outside of the areas we toured there are other areas with minor projects to be attended to so when completed, taking into account material costs and technical services we believe we would spend in excess of $40 million,” he said.
Dr. Ferguson noted that this upgrading work would have a positive impact on more than 15,000 households. Some of the communities that will benefit include Rock Hall, Waugh Hill, Mount Dawson, Richard Hall, Sligoville, and Little Greendale.
In the case of Waugh Hill, instructions have already been given for a technical crew from the National Water Commission (NWC), to examine what needs to be done to resuscitate that system. “From all indication the terrain is a challenging one and we expect the estimate to be fairly high, but it will be done,” the State Minister said.
He also informed that that some $5 million would be spent in the Sligoville area to correct problems such as consistency in supply and low pressure.
Minister Ferguson further explained that following an analysis, a preliminary estimate of $9 million had been put forward to bring the systems in the Richard Hall and Mount Dawson area into operation.
“In the interim the trucking of water to the area will be regularized to a strict delivery regime of Mondays and Thursdays,” he noted.
Of the water system in Little Greendale, which serves South St. Jago, St. Jago Gardens and sections of Lauriston, Dr. Ferguson said he was pleased with the work that had begun.
“That project is coming on stream quite nicely. We have already spent about $500,000 and to complete the outstanding work we estimate to spend another $2.7 million but it will significantly improve the existing situation of low, intermittent and in some cases no supply,” he said.
The State Minister pointed out that when the Kingston Metropolitan Area (KMA) project is implemented in 2007, it would make a significant difference in the overall water supply distribution in South East St. Catherine and the greater Spanish Town area.
“Much of what we’re doing now is a short term response but with the KMA project expected to be completed in 2009, and coupled with strategies to be implemented in St. Catherine, it is expected to have a major impact on the lives of the people in the parish,” he assured.