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St James Municipal Corporation to dialogue with NWC over water restrictions plan

Published:Tuesday | January 14, 2020 | 12:19 AMChristopher Thomas/Gleaner Writer


The St James Municipal Corporation (StJMC) will be seeking dialogue with the National Water Commission (NWC) to determine what remedial action will be taken to supply water to rural communities in the parish during the planned period of water restriction over the next two weeks. During last Thursday’s monthly meeting of the StJMC, Montego Bay Mayor Homer Davis gave the assurance that he would be speaking to the NWC about having the corporation truck water to the affected areas during the lock-off period, which is slated to begin on January 22. “For the rural parts, there’ll be some maintenance work to restore normal operations. The areas that will be affected in St James will include Bickersteth, Cambridge, Grange Hill, Lamb’s River, Catadupa, and other areas. I’ll be seeking dialogue with the NWC during this two-week period for them to truck water to these areas,” Davis said. “I haven’t seen anything as it relates to the urban centre of Montego Bay, but I will seek to have dialogue to get a more frontal update as to whether the NWC will be trucking water to these areas that will be affected,” added Davis.

The mayor was responding to Government Senator Charles Sinclair, the councillor for the Flanker division in the StJMC, who reported that the NWC would be restricting water to several western parishes to carry out maintenance work during the two-week period. “I saw certain information on social media referring to a report from the NWC that western parishes will be affected by water shortage through the formal system because of maintenance work to be done on certain critical pumps, and they referred to St James, Trelawny, Hanover, and some areas of Westmoreland. But what’s going to be the back-up during this two-week period?” asked Sinclair.


“When we see the situation that arose in Kingston because of the roadworks, then we know we’ll have a similar situation here, but that was an unplanned situation, and this is planned,” Sinclair added, referencing last year’s protests in Kingston over water-supply disruptions due to ongoing construction projects at the time. Between April and May last year, the NWC was harshly criticised, particularly by residents in St Andrew, Kingston, and St Thomas for allegedly failing to provide notification of water lock-offs.