JM | Feb 25, 2023

Amid water shortages, PNP calls for more water trucking allocations

/ Our Today

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Logo of the 83-year-old People’s National Party (PNP). (Photo:

The Opposition, the People’s National Party (PNP), is demanding the government take immediate action in light of the National Water Commission’s (NWC) poor planning to avert the water shortage issue in the corporate area.

The NWC has recently announced that water restrictions expected to continue into May of this year have been imposed in certain areas.

Opposition Spokesperson on Agriculture and Water, Mr Lothan Cousins, MP, emphasised that access to water is a fundamental human right recognised by the United Nations and expressed his deep concern over the lack of access to water in almost every constituency in Jamaica, particularly in rural and mountainous regions, and now, the corporate area.

Lothan Cousins, opposition spokesman on agriculture and water.

The Opposition Spokesperson stated that it is unfortunate that an island so blessed with water resources has to resort to a “regulation schedule” to supply water to its citizens. He added that the rapid growth of the population and increasing urbanisation of Kingston and St. Andrew without proper environmental planning would exacerbate the issue further.

Cousins called on the government to implement a long-term sustainable solution to this recurring problem. He urged the government to focus on issues such as improving the water storage capacity, especially during periods of heavy rainfall, and establishing additional water storage facilities.

Cousins highlighted that the two major systems currently in place to deliver water to the corporate area, namely the Mona and Hermitage Dams, have exceeded their initial scope of operation.

Panoramic view of Jamaica’s largest dam, the Mona Reservoir in Kingston. (Photo:’sBond)

These systems were designed years ago when the population of the corporate area was less than half of what it is today, and they require urgent and immediate desilting and expansion.

The Opposition takes note of the proposal to truck water to areas affected by the looming drought but calls the $50 Million recently announced by the Minister without Portfolio for this purpose woefully inadequate.

The Opposition is therefore calling on the government to increase the allocated funding for trucking water in the interim. “If we are serious about addressing the chronic water shortage, we need to allocate the necessary funding required to mitigate these circumstances while we work on long-term solutions,” said Cousins.


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