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#MappingMATTHEW:‎ Pump $800 million more into hurricane preparation - Arscott

Published:Saturday | October 1, 2016 | 10:18 AM
Arscott: " ... the major drains need to be dealt with."

Noel Arscott, the opposition spokesman on local government wants the government to allocate up to $800 million more for drain cleaning ahead of Hurricane Matthew expected to hit the ‎island Sunday into Monday.

The Government has asked parish councils to use money from their Parochial Revenue Funds and has advanced $1 million from the Constituency Development Fund for each Member of Parliament to undertake hurricane preparation work.

However, Arscott says this is not enough.

"With the amount of drains and so forth that we have across the country, nothing less than $500 million or maybe $800 million would be required to ensure that we are in a good shape to withstand any significant rainfall," he said.

Arscott also told The Gleaner he was not satisfied with the government’s response to the impending hurricane.

"I expected the National Works Agency to play a bigger role because the major drains need to be dealt with. Also, the government has not put any new funds in this effort," Arscott said.

He argues that the major drains will overflow if they are not urgently attended to.

"If the smaller drains are cleaned and cleared, and the major ones are not, then we are going to run into problems," said Arscott, the member of Parliament of Clarendon South West.