KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent – Vincentians in the Grenadines should have had a public water supply by now, former manager of the Central Water and Sewerage Authority (CWSA) Daniel Cummings said on Wednesday.
Cummings, an opposition New Democratic Party (NDP) lawmakers, is calling on the Unity Labour Party government to implement his party’s plan to supply the Grenadines with fresh water.
“Give the people in the Grenadines their water,” Cumming said at a press briefing in which he said a project to supply water to the district was conceptualise before the NDP was voted out of office in 2001.
In the Grenadines, where there are no rivers, residents have to build large cisterns and often have to cope with severe water shortages during the dry season.
“The fact is, the Grenadines should have had a reliable water supply for quite some time. It was a project on the way [that] should have been continued by this government,” he said.
“There has been nothing done in respect of the supply of water to the people of the Grenadines, in this day and age. It’s been long overdue,” Cummings further stated.
CWSA officials on Tuesday said that Grenadine residents owe the company EC$750,000 for waste collection, with an average of 20 per cent of household paying the monthly fees.
“… when you put water services in the Grenadines, the people in the Grenadines, I assure you, will be very happy to pay water rates and solid waste charges,” Cummings said.
“You have to live in the Grenadines or visit for a couple of days in the dry season to understand what the conditions are like. So, put the emphasis, Mr. Saunders and the government, on putting water supply in the Grenadines and I guarantee you the people of the Grenadines will be happy to pay solid waste services,” he said in reference to CWSA manager Garth Saunders.
Cummings, however, said that solid waste management in the Grenadines is not just a matter for Grenadine people, noting the islands’ dependence on tourism.
“It’s a tourism venture which brings in substantial benefits to us as a people throughout this country. So it is imperative that we keep the Grenadines clean and we have a responsibility to do it – all of us,” Cummings said of the NDP stronghold.