Opposition Leader Mia Mottley is placing blame for the death of an 11-year-old boy in a traffic accident at the entrance to the Villages at Coverley last Friday, squarely at the feet of Government.
Addressing a Barbados Labour Party (BLP) public meeting in Codrington Hill, St Michael last night, immediately opposite the former home of BLP icon and National Hero, the late Sir Grantley Adams, Mottley said the accident occurred because Government had abdicated its responsibility and duty to the public.
Abijah Holder died on the spot when the car in which he was travelling on his way home from school graduation, reportedly struck a sign post on the road that leads into the Christ Church development and overturned. The car was driven by his mother.
Mottley said fault for the accident had to be placed on the driveway to the Villages at Coverley, which, she alleged, illegally extended onto the road reserve, which is state property, but Government had been negligent in enforcing its removal.
“What I need to tell you is that the Chief Town Planner advised . . . that they needed to remove that obstruction from the road reserve, because both the Chief Town Planner and the Chief Technical Officer were against it,” the BLP leader told the crowd.
She said more than three years had passed since notification was given . . . and the morning that it was to be removed, a call came to the MTW Department and told them, ‘do not use the MTW equipment to move nothing at Coverley’,” the BLP leader charged.
“A young boy, full of promise, is dead tonight,” Mottley said.
“This Government has abdicated the responsibility to protect the public interest. If this were the life of the son of somebody prominent in this society, Barbados would have catch afire about that thing in the road. But it was a Rasta boy. He was the son of a black woman, a Rasta woman.
“How can two Barbadoses emerge in this country again from people who should know better?” she asked.
The BLP leader further claimed that the developer was being allowed a free hand with building standards.
“The Environmental Protection Department is yet today to approve those houses,” she said, reporting that the EPD had ruled that windows for the buildings were too small, causing the houses to be hot.
Despite this, she said, houses were being sold.
Mottley also raised questions about the deal with Government through which the developer acquired the land. She said Government leased the developer five acres of state land for 99 years at $100 a year for the housing project.
“And you got a bank and a clinic and restaurants and a gas station paying them rent up there, and the taxpayers land get give way,” she claimed.