Warmington Confident Jamaica Can Achieve Millennium Development Goal for Water


State Minister for Water and Housing, Hon. Everald Warmington, is confident that the Government will be able to meet the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of providing all Jamaicans with access to potable water by the year 2015.
Mr. Warmington, who was addressing a ceremony to officially hand over the Mother Fleure and Golden Run water supply schemes in Craighead Manchester on July 9, informed that a number of projects are being undertaken with the aim of achieving that goal.
Among them is the $17 billion Jamaica Water Supply Improvement Project (Jamaica SIP), which will be implemented through the National Water Commission (NWC) over the next two years.
Jamaica SIP, Mr. Warmington said, is the “single most significant water project in Jamaica since the 1980s,” and will address supply problems in the Kingston Metropolitan Area, with a number of rural parishes also slated to benefit.
In addition, he informed that 19 water projects will be completed this year, at a cost of $411.6 million, to serve an additional 44, 272 persons in rural Jamaica.
The projects, which will be undertaken through the Rural Water Supply Limited, will be done in the parishes of Portland, St. Thomas, St. Mary, St. Catherine, Manchester, Westmoreland and St. James. “When these projects are completed, approximately 50 per cent of our residents in the rural communities will have access to clean, safe water,” the State Minister informed.
In the meantime, he said that work will also continue on a Rural Water Master Plan, which is a policy that will guide investment in the water sector to increase the delivery of potable water to rural communities.
The plan seeks to identify the areas served as well as the level of service provided. It will also ascertain the areas that do not have safe water supplies and develop strategies and designs to provide water to these parts.
Mr. Warmington also commended the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) and the European Union-funded Poverty Reduction Programme, on continued efforts to “provide water for all”.
General Manager for Technical Services at JSIF, Omar Sweeny, reported that to date, JSIF has disbursed $235 million for projects to rehabilitate ageing water infrastructure, maintain service quality, and ensure compliance with stringent environment and health regulations.
He said that another $125 million have been allotted to approved projects, with more than 75,000 persons benefitting from this investment.
The Mother Fleure and Golden Run water supply projects represent the joint efforts of JSIF, the Manchester Parish Council and citizens of North East Manchester, and will serve more than 5,000 residents from seven communities.
A total of $16.7 million was spent on the systems, and the scope of work included rehabilitation of reservoir, repair and replacement of pipelines and fittings, and electrical works.

JIS Social