Region One roads in deplorable state

Dear Editor,

The Christmas season is here, the year is coming to the end, and the administration of Region 1 continues to run the region as if it is a comedy show. The roads are in a deplorable state of disrepair. Over the years the administration purchased heavy equipment including a bulldozer, roller, grader and hymac to work on the roads. Some of this equipment was defective while some arrived in the region but never worked for even a day.

One excavator was working, but because of a bad decision over a month ago, it was sent to the Tobago Swamp Road to work without proper matting or foundation. The excavator slipped into the swamp mud and was buried down about six feet. Only the top and the boom are out of the mud. It has been reported that after heavy rainfall the excavator sinks some more. This was a working excavator, and if those in authority do not take out this equipment the region would lose a few more millions, and the roads and canals would continue to deteriorate.

The Kumaka Creek drains the low lands of the Khan Hills, the northern part of the Mabaruma compound swamp, the Kokerite area, the Barabina swamp roads and lowlands, part of Broomes Hill swamp and the Hosororo swamp roads. Please note that the residents of Barabina and the northern part of the Mabaruma compound are mainly Amerindian. They use this same Kumaka Creek as the main means of transportation to take their produce to the Kumaka Market, and to go fishing, hunting or crab-catching in their traditional way. The administration built a very low bridge at the Barabina junction and also blocked the Kumaka Creek with concrete work, leaving a small opening which allows only small amounts of water to flow. This has impeded the natural flow of water causing the low lands to be flooded constantly, and the Barabina Swamp Road to be covered with water most of the time.

This situation is very stressful for those people who have to traverse the area. This may sound unbelievable, but about two weeks ago a schoolchild nearly drowned on the road.

The low bridge at the Barabina junction and the blocking of the Kumaka Creek have not only caused severe hardship to persons who depended on it for transportation, but also those who used to farm on the low lands.

Could someone in authority remove this concrete structure which stops the natural flow of water and also raise the bridge at the Barabina junction so that the residents would continue to use the creek for transportation as before, the farmers would be able to farm on the low lands again, and the Barabina Swamp Road would be drained and fixed.

Yours faithfully,
Desmond Fernandes, MP

Editor’s note

We are sending a copy of this letter to Chairman of Region One, Mr Fermin Singh, for any comment he might wish to make.

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