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The area of Lowmans Bay where the fisher folk are based, seen on Sunday, May 12, 2024.
The area of Lowmans Bay where the fisher folk are based, seen on Sunday, May 12, 2024.

Fisherfolk who operate from Lowmans Bay, many of them relocated from Rose Place to make way for the construction of a new port in Kingstown, will have to wait even longer for the construction of restrooms.

Minister of Urban Development, Energy, Seaports, Grenadines Affairs and Local Government, Senator Benarva Browne said the matter has been put before a multi-agency committee.

Daniel Cummings, MP for West Kingstown, where Lowmans Bay is located, suggested that building a washroom was simpler than this.

“To build a washroom? Lord have mercy! Lord have mercy on us! What a country! What a country. A multi-taskforce to build a washroom… It is a good thing it is only a washroom,” Cummings said in Parliament.  

He told lawmakers that the fisherfolks who operate at Lowmans Bay do so in very unsanitary conditions, occasioned by the absence of any public washrooms.

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The opposition MP if there were any plans to establish a proper washroom facility for the use of the public, especially the fisherfolks in that area.

Before asking the question, Cummings had said he could not understand why on the Order Paper it had been directed to the minister of works, as the question related to fisheries.

However, House Speaker Rochelle Forde had indicated that Browne would answer the questions.

Browne told Parliament that the fishing community on Lowmans Bay has existed for several years and was expanded in 2022, an apparent reference to the relocation of the Rose Place fishers.

“To ensure the sustainable use of that waterfront, the government has to be in a position to assess the wholesome way to use the land considering all the functions, present and future at Lowmans Bay,” the senator said.

“To this end, the Cabinet has established a multiagency committee to review Lowmans Bay with a view to providing the best-fit facilities for the location.  The committee has had its initial meetings conducted, site visits and their recommendations are anticipated shortly.”

Lowmans Bay 2
The area of Lowmans Bay where the fisher folk are based, seen on Sunday, May 12, 2024.

The senator said that during the budget presentation, Minister of Fisheries Saboto Caesar indicated that funding was allocated for the improvement of works, to include Lowmans Bay.

“I particularly rise to answer the question as it has some relevance toward the urban setting as well as the port development,” Browne said.

She reiterated that a multiagency committee has been set up to review and develop the plans, adding that the Ministry of Urban Development sits on that committee.

However, Cummings asked whether the minister knew that officials from the Ministry of Agriculture had gone to Lowmans Bay “not long ago and met with the fisher folk and made certain grandiose promises to deal with these very vexing issues, particularly the construction of washroom facilities.

“And if that is the case, when is work expected to be done?” the opposition lawmaker asked.

“The funds were identified in the budget. But in addition to that the honourable prime minister indicated in another forum to the fisher folk that some of the monies gained from dredging the sand will be assigned to facilitating this very development in Lowmans Bay. I am asking on behalf of these fisher folk when are we going to see some work,” Cumming said.

But Browne said that her answer suggested that there were a host of issues that were being experienced at Lowmans Bay.

“To ensure that we deal with the issues comprehensively, a multi-agency committee has been set up to articulate what are the issues that are currently being faced and how they should be best resolved,” Browne said.

“To build a washroom? My God! What a country!” Cummings commented.

Browne continued:

“As I stated, we are anticipating their recommendations. From their recommendations, we would accept or deny and then move toward the design implementation phase.”

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