Wed | Jan 27, 2021

What of your Portland Cottage promise, Desmond McKenzie?

Published:Sunday | October 14, 2018 | 12:00 AM


Last year, Desmond McKenzie, the minister of local government and community development, in celebrating Local Government Month in Clarendon, declared on the grounds of the Anglican Church, among other things, that he would be upgrading the Portland Cottage Primary School. This school also operates as a shelter.

When pressed for a time frame for this work to commence, he said that the work would begin within a month or so. It is now over a year and nothing has been done to our school. The school administrator, board, parent-teacher association, and citizens' association have heard nothing of the promise Mr McKenzie made.

Now, Mr McKenzie (the salesman) is at it again in another part of the country, selling the importance of local government and making promises to the people in Westmoreland. He reportedly said: "We are in the stage now of constructing a brand-new matron quarters. We are also now considering the building of a brand-new ward to replace the old one so as to improve the capacity at the facility." The people of Westmoreland should note the operative word "considering".

McKenzie is "considering building a brand-new ward to replace the old one". In Clarendon, those of us at the meeting were in high spirits, took Mr McKenzie at his word, and reported to our citizens' associations promises made to us.

We in Clarendon have not seen, thus far, Mr McKenzie's promise become reality. Portland Cottage and surrounding communities that use the school as a shelter want to know when the work to upgrade the primary school is going to commence. Or if the promise made is still in the pipeline, he and his team are keeping it a close secret.

The people of Westmoreland are hereby warned that they should temper their celebration. Don't take any promise made by Desmond McKenzie made to them as gospel. What happens to us could very well happen to them.