JIS News

Transport and Works Minister, Hon. Mike Henry, has called for swift and decisive action to contain infringements by scrap metal seekers which, he said, were having a severe negative impact on the construction sector.
Mr. Henry, in adding his voice to concerns raised by his counterpart, Agriculture Minister, Dr. Christopher Tufton, regarding the impact of scrap metal pilfering on sugar estates and other agriculture-related entities, said the same problem was manifesting across construction sites and other related entities islandwide.
He said that, as a result, he was calling for “strong, quick and decisive action to deter those who have been selfishly jeopardising the development of the country for their own personal benefit.”
Mr. Henry told JIS News that aggregate quarries and some of the more remote construction sites have been reporting the loss of vital and expensive pieces of equipment, much of which are being traced to the scrap metal trade.
He said that whether the losses were being experienced in agriculture or construction, “it just cannot be allowed to continue, if we are to reach anywhere significant with the development of the country.”
“Think of a quarry operator losing a pump – sometimes his only pump – from his plant, only to learn that the expensive piece of productive equipment was disassembled and sold as scrap metal,” Minister Henry exampled.
“That, in a nutshell, signifies where we are now and how serious the pilferage surrounding the scrap metal trade has gotten. I didn’t know things could have gotten worse than the partial scrapping of bridges and manholes on the roadways but, yes, it’s now worse,” Mr. Henry said.
He stated that as a result of these developments, he was in full support of Dr. Tufton’s call for serious remedial action against the perpetrators and the scrap metal trade in general.
“We cannot afford any major dislocation in the construction sector now, not with all the major projects coming on stream,” Mr. Henry said.

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