Mon | Aug 26, 2019

Letter of the Day | KD's nonsense on Edward Seaga Highway

Published:Saturday | August 4, 2018 | 12:00 AM


In the Senate sitting on Friday, July 27, 2018 , during the debate on Regulations under the Toll Roads Act, opposition Senator K.D. Knight made a presentation which was primarily based on the naming of the North-South Highway, the Edward Seaga Highway.

In stating his opposition and calling for a deed poll, the goodly senator said only the leg of the highway that "commenced and ended in St Ann" was correctly named, as there was a resolution in the St Ann Municipal Corporation supporting this while the St Catherine Municipal Corporation purportedly passed a resolution for another name.

Unfortunately, Senator Knight is wrong for the following reasons:

1. A municipal corporation (formerly parish council) is a "creature of statute" and gets its authority solely from statute, in this case the Local Governance Act. That act does not vest the council in either St Ann or St Catherine with the authority to name the North-South Highway.

2. The Parochial Roads Act, and particularly Section 4, clearly excludes the local authority from the management of that roadway or any main road. The section reads as follows:

"Each parish council shall have the exclusive care management, control and superintendence of all highways and all public roads, thoroughfares, streets, lanes, aqueducts and bridges in the parish for which it is appointed, except such roads as are otherwise governed and regulated under laws of this Island specially relating thereto and except the roads under the superintendence of the Chief Technical Director."

3. The Edward Seaga Highway is a road falling in the category of the first exception, being a road governed and regulated under the Toll Roads Act.

It was indeed a sad day in the Senate in witnessing a senator relying on a wrong application of the law for clearly partisan reasons.

If Senator Knight is to maintain any modicum of respect he should seek to correct his comments made in the debate which is not supported by law.

Independent Jamaican