Tue | Dec 11, 2018

NWC reacts to water crisis in two St Catherine divisions.

Published:Tuesday | February 20, 2018 | 12:00 AMRuddy Mathison/Gleaner Writer

The National Water Commission (NWC) has reacted to claims by two councillors at last Thursday's general meeting of the

St Catherine Municipal Corporation that their divisions are faced with severe water crisis.

Leroy Dunn, Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) councillor for the Guy's Hill division, and his People's National Party counterpart, Dwight Burke of Sligoville, both criticised the NWC for not attending to the long-standing water crisis prevailing in their respective areas.

Dunn had also accused the NWC valve operators in Guy's Hill of playing politics with the limited available water supply, according to him, deliberately victimising persons in communities who are known supporters of the JLP.

Water production manager for St Catherine, Calvert Davis, told The Gleaner that even in the best of times, Guy's Hill does experience water challenges.

"The treatment plant in this area only operates between eight and 10 hours per day, and when coupled with other issues such as high turbidity and JPS (Jamaica Public Service Company) outages, the plant does have some issues," he disclosed.

Davis said that the Lime Hall intake, which had dried up, now has some water, and NWC engineers are now equipping it to further assist the area.

 

NO EVIDENCE OF INTERFERENCE

 

He dismissed the notion of political interference by valve operators in the area, noting that he has seen no evidence of such victimisation.

Davis revealed that the Sligoville No. 2 pump was taken out for repairs and was reinstalled on Saturday, so residents would now begin to see improved water supply.

"Sligoville was improved with the rehabilitation of the pumps in 2012 - As such, the area will continue to receive regulated water supply from 24 hours per day to once per week."

Davis divulged that there was an ongoing project to replace distribution mains in the Pattern Park, Richard Hall, and Mt Dawson communities.

"Despite this, water was still not reaching some people," he conceded, attributing the problem to tampering with the system by persons engaging in illegal connections.

He said that other measures were being pursued to address the water problem in these areas.