JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The island’s infirmaries are to be outfitted with solar panels, power generators and closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras by the end of 2019.
  • This undertaking is being spearheaded by the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development, in tandem with several stakeholder entities.
  • Portfolio Minister, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, says these provisions are expected to significantly enhance the comfort and safety of the residents and staff.

The island’s infirmaries are to be outfitted with solar panels, power generators and closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras by the end of 2019.

This undertaking is being spearheaded by the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development, in tandem with several stakeholder entities.

Portfolio Minister, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, says these provisions are expected to significantly enhance the comfort and safety of the residents and staff.

He was speaking in the 2019/20 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on Tuesday (May 28).

Mr. McKenzie said the solar panels are being installed at a cost of approximately $27 million, with funding support from the National Housing Trust (NHT).

Additionally, he said the Culture, Health, Arts, Sports and Education (CHASE) Fund is financing the delivery and installation of the generators, which has commenced.

Meanwhile, the Clarendon infirmary is the next facility slated to be outfitted with CCTV cameras and other safety features, following the initial installation of similar inputs at the Hanover infirmary.

The Minister said the focus on instituting safeguards, in particular, demonstrates that “the security of our infirmaries is now being addressed as never before”.

Mr. McKenzie also announced an increase in the education grant allocated to Municipal Corporation Divisions, from $300,000 to $500,000.

Additionally, he said the allocation for administrative assistance will be increased from $25,000 to $30,000.

In the meantime, Mr. McKenzie praised the Board of Supervision (BOS), which he described as the “guardian” of the Ministry’s social protection programme, “and a beacon of hope for our vulnerable people”.

“I commend the staff of the BOS, headed by the young and vibrant Treka Lewis, as they work to protect our citizens in partnership with the local authorities,” the Minister said.

He also announced that the Golden Age Home in Vineyard Town; the Denham Town Golden Age Home, and full responsibility for the welfare of the indigent, have been returned to the Ministry.

Mr. McKenzie noted that these engagements were previously overseen by the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, which he thanked for its “tireless stewardship over many years”.