Thu | Sep 21, 2023

Negril gets multimillion-dollar water supply system

Published:Monday | August 29, 2022 | 12:06 AMHopeton Bucknor/Gleaner Writer


Residents in and around the resort town of Negril in Westmoreland will have a respite from water supply woes after last Thursday’s commissioning of a $475-million water supply system, which was unveiled by Senator Mathew Samuda.

The new water system, which has its hub at the Whitehall Pumping Station in Negril, will serve an estimated 9,000 residents in Negril and close to seven to eight communities in proximity to the resort town, one of the nation’s premier tourism destinations.

According to Samuda, the minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, while he is satisfied that Negril and its environs will be well served with water, he is cognisant that other communities across the western parish are having water challenges, which the Government hopes to address by putting in more water systems.

“This is not sufficient, but it is a step in the right direction, with an acknowledgement that Westmoreland does not have the benefits of the water infrastructure that it requires to be the growing parish that we know it can be,” said Samuda.

“Through the advocacy of Member of Parliament Moreland Wilson, and the commitment of the prime minister, the system was committed, the investment has been made, and it is a commitment kept. And we are very happy that today, 9,000 residents will have better water supply,” added Samuda.

While lamenting the general state of the water supply in Westmoreland, Samuda said efforts are being made to identify ideal sources and that so far, one river source that can be utilised has been identified.

“The reality is that the current source is inadequate for the growth that you have experienced. Certainly, in the western half of Westmoreland, the need for increased source water is impatient of debate. Roaring River is one source that we have identified that is feasible; and through normal engineering, nothing too crazy, it can facilitate the source water that we require,” said Samuda.

Wilson, Savanna-la-Mar Mayor Bertel Moore and Kevin Kerr, vice-president of operations at National Water Commission Western Office, who were present at the commissioning, said residents of communities such as Orange Hill, Nonareil, and Retirement should be quite happy.