JIS News

As heavy rains continue to affect the community of Slipe in St. Elizabeth, Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Dr. Christopher Tufton has moved to engaged public health agencies to avert any possible disease outbreaks in the area.
Dr. Tufton, who is the Member of Parliament for South West St. Elizabeth, spoke with JIS News during a visit to the community on Friday (October 8). He explained that water from the Black River had damaged and washed out a number of houses in Arlington, Vineyards and Parotte, but Slipe has received the more severe rage from the flooding.
“Slipe has a lot of swamp areas which border the Black River, and the water table increased by four and five feet. people are traveling by boats and a number of families are marooned. This has several implications for the community (and). children and adults walking in the water are susceptible to diseases in terms contaminants that they have to encounter on their feet,” he said.
“We are communicating with the health authorities to get support and give them medication, and also distribute water boots. We have assisted families that have been totally washed out, and we are continuing that effort. In the case of Slipe where the school (Slipe Primary School) is totally marooned, it is hard for them to maneuver the water, so we have to wait, and my advice to parents is to continue to work with the children, read with them and keep their minds occupied in a constructive way,” the Minister stated.
Meanwhile, Dr. Tufton said the Ministry now has a clear picture of the damage done by rains associated with Tropical Storm Nichole, and has dispatched extension officers.
“We have done a fair bit of analysis and we are now assessing those who have been damaged to see in what ways we can help them. We will continue to work with the resources that we have and as more resources are made available we will do more, because we want the farmers to get back up for the sake of the consumers and their own livelihood,” the Minister stated.

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