Wiredja Online News Logo

WiredJa Online News

Wiredja Online News Logo

WiredJa Online News

Log in

JAMAICA | Holness promises recovery funds for MoBay

Featured Prime Minister Andrew Holness (third from left), speaks with Attorney General and Member of Parliament for West Central St James, Marlene Malahoo Forte (second left), during a tour of flood-affected areas in Montego Bay. Others on the tour are General Manager of RIU Montego Bay, Frank Sondern (left); Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Desmond McKenzie (fourth left, partially hidden); Minister of Tourism and Member of Parliament for East Central St James, Edmund Bartlett (5th left); and Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Dr Horace Chang (right), who is also Member of Parliament for North West St James. (Photo: JIS) Prime Minister Andrew Holness (third from left), speaks with Attorney General and Member of Parliament for West Central St James, Marlene Malahoo Forte (second left), during a tour of flood-affected areas in Montego Bay. Others on the tour are General Manager of RIU Montego Bay, Frank Sondern (left); Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Desmond McKenzie (fourth left, partially hidden); Minister of Tourism and Member of Parliament for East Central St James, Edmund Bartlett (5th left); and Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Dr Horace Chang (right), who is also Member of Parliament for North West St James. (Photo: JIS)
MONTEGO BAY, St. James, November 24, 2017  — Following his tour of flood ravaged Montego Bay yesterday, Prime Minister Andrew Holness says his government is committed to provide emergency funding to assist that city's recovery effort as it tries to recover from the heavy rainfall on Wednesday.

Already $20 million has been identified and will be made immediately available.

 Holness said Montego Bay received three-and-a-half inches of rainfall over a four hour period, resulting in extensive damage to both private and public infrastructure.

Speaking at a press conference at the St James Municipal Corporation following a tour of the affected areas yesterday, Holness said he would make allocation from the budget.

“There will be some emergency allocation. Recently in Parliament I announced there would be some programme of patching; we will have to now take a second look at the supplementary estimates that we intended to table in Parliament next week because this will call for some additional funding,” he said.

The prime minister said the significant weather event brought into sharp focus the great threat of climate change and is calling for people to become more aware of the issue.

“Government will now have to find resources to expand gullies, to pave areas that are not paved and there's the issue of where people choose to live. Living on the banks of the gully should not be a place where people choose to live. We need to get our citizens to start acting responsibly,” Holness said.

He added that intense weather events are becoming more frequent and government must put in place measures, such as building with greater capacity, to mitigate the effects of natural disasters.

“Our behaviour is somehow linked to these kinds of intense weather event. The issue is how do we build the infrastructure and treat the infrastructure to prevent the devastating effect of heavy rainfall.

Holness urged the Municipal Corporationl to ensure that all blocked drains are cleared and applauded the Municipal Corporation for their incredible response in the clean-up effort.