Minister with Responsibility for Information Sandrea Falconer yesterday urged Jamaicans to inform authorities of the discovery of rodent infestations.
Speaking during the regular Jamaica House press briefing, Falconer took note of a report in yesterday's Gleaner which pointed an invasion by roaches and rats at the Supreme Court building in downtown Kingston.
"As the person who chairs the Clean-up Jamaica committee, what I want to say is that we have done extensive work and we have spent millions of dollars on baiting and clean-up," the minister said.
She added: "We won't know where there are problems everywhere. All we ask of the citizens is to either call the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA), my office, or the Ministry of Health, and let us know where the problems are so that we can fix them as quickly as possible."
Amid an increase in the rat population, Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller in April established the interministerial committee to develop a comprehensive approach and implementation plan to spearhead clean-up activities across the island.
Falconer said yesterday that $13.4 million has been allocated by the Ministry of Health to pay 61 community health workers as part of a strategy to cleanse the island.
"We are focusing on young people who are being trained to do this job and we are going to pay them $8,400 on a fortnightly basis," Falconer said.
She added: "What they will be doing, among other things, is to go into the community public-education programme and also to search so that we can destroy breeding sites for the rats."
In the meantime, Jennifer Edwards, executive director of the NSWMA, said her agency has been trying hard to clean up the country's solid waste but noted there are resource constraints.