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JIS News

Jamaicans in rural areas, who are still without access to clean drinking water, are being assured that the Rural Water Supply (RWS) Limited is working hard to bring the commodity to them.

Managing Director of Rural Water Supplies Limited, Peter Clarke, speaking at a JIS Think Tank held on Tuesday (July 13) at the agency’s headquarters at 58a Half-Way-Tree Road.

Managing Director of the RWS, Peter Clarke, said the company intends to meet and exceed the standard for access to water set by the United Nations as part of its Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
“The MDGS have, as one of the major aims, access to water for all people worldwide. We have endeavoured to meet the challenges of the MDGs and recognise the need to provide access to water,” he said.
Mr. Clarke was speaking at a Think Tank held on July 13 at JIS’ head office at 58a Half-Way-Tree Road.
According to the RWS head, there are a number of Jamaicans without access to potable water, who need urgent and special attention, and one of the mandates of the company is to develop projects to close that gap by whatever means.
He said that while providing access to water, according to the MDGs requirement, mean making “potable, clean, safe water available to a person or a community within one kilometre of their abode,” in many instances, the RWS will go one step further. He said that Jamaicans do not culturally accept the UN definition of access to water, and instead, want the commodity flowing from taps in their homes.
“Making access to water comfortable does not necessarily mean abiding all the time by the one-kilometre rule. If we can do better, we certainly will do better,” he stated.
Mr. Clarke informed that the agency has put a number of systems in place, some sophisticated, while others are quite simple and these include spring catchments, concrete entombment, and pipelines with easy chlorination systems.
“What is important is that whatever water is provided is potable, which means it is clean, clear and safe for the householders to drink,” Mr. Clarke pointed out.
Established in 1983 as the Carib Engineering Limited, the RWS is the government agency with responsibility for making water accessible to persons in rural areas.