JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Local Government and Community Development Minister, Hon. Desmond McKenzie on Saturday April 23, led a massive clean-up initiative in sections of St. James, where several hundred truck loads of solid waste were removed to the Retirement Landfill.
  • The project which started on Wednesday April 20 and will continue to Sunday April 24, targeted communities which had a pile up of solid waste to include large old household appliances, derelict vehicles and other items which were no longer useful.
  • Speaking to JIS News, Minister McKenzie that he was delighted that through the initiative, communities were a lot cleaner.

Local Government and Community Development Minister, Hon. Desmond McKenzie on Saturday April 23, led a massive clean-up initiative in sections of St. James, where several hundred truck loads of solid waste were removed to the Retirement Landfill.

The project which started on Wednesday April 20 and will continue to Sunday April 24, targeted communities which had a pile up of solid waste to include large old household appliances, derelict vehicles and other items which were no longer useful.

Speaking to JIS News, Minister McKenzie that he was delighted that through the initiative, communities were a lot cleaner.

He said the project has resulted in the removal of waste which was fast becoming a health hazard for the residents.

“The official start of the clean-up has gone very well. The response from the residents has been overwhelming; they have been taking out the bulky stuff. The trucks have done more than 20 trips within the first 2 and half hours of the exercise,” Minister McKenzie stated.

He also toured the Railway Lane area where it was observed that the main drain in the community was blocked by domestic garbage.

Minister McKenzie said the drain will receive attention, as it not only sits in the heart of the Montego Bay Transport Centre and the People’s Arcade, but runs directly into the sea.

“This is one of the areas of concern…As you notice work has commenced on this…its going take some time because of the depth of the drain. It is an earth drain so it tells you the challenge that it poses,” he stated.

Meanwhile, Minister McKenzie said efforts will be made to intensify the programme in order to have St. James looking cleaner and more welcoming.

He pointed out that the time has come for the authorities including the St. James Parish Council, National Solid Waste Management Authority, (NSWMA) and the Jamaica Constabulary Force, (JCF) to intensify their efforts of monitoring and sanctioning persons, who continue to breach the Solid Waste Management Act.

“Western Parks and Markets, who has responsibility for this region has been tasked and they understand what I am saying in terms of doing what they are supposed to be doing…They can’t tell me that they are restricted…in doing what they are to do. Also the Parish Council has a responsibility…they have enough Municipal Police to police the area…but the people also have an obligation,” Minister McKenzie opined.

He also pointed out that there was need to look at the social life in many communities.

“This community (Railway Lane) needs serious upgrading and one of the challenges that the administration faces now is community renewal and uplifting the standards of persons who live in these communities,” he stated.