Health Minister John Boyce has conceded that something has gone wrong with the south coast sewerage system, and he believes he knows who is to blame.
Addressing a political meeting of his ruling Democratic Labour Party (DLP), Boyce, who is the parliamentary representative for Christ Church South, which encompasses the sewerage plant at Graeme Hall, pointed the finger at the former Barbados Labour Party administration, accusing it of years of neglect.
However, he said it now falls to the DLP Government to correct the problem.
“You see that sewerage plant at Graeme Hall, that was . . . ignored for 15 years,” he told the gathering of the St Michael West branch on Sunday night.
“And I’m not surprised that it has fallen on us in the Democratic Labour Party, at a time when there is not a lot of fiscal room, . . . to find the couple of million dollars that it will take to bring it back up to a standard that it can be used,” he told the gathering.
Boyce, who is an engineer by profession, revealed that he was part of the initial team when the plant was constructed. And he said he would be willing to take part in any national discussion on the subject.
Just last week, Opposition Leader Mia Mottley warned that all was not well with the sewerage system.
Addressing her party’s annual conference, the BLP leader said she was in possession of a report by biochemist and water quality consultant Patricia Inniss titled, ‘Funds are needed for our collapsing sewerage system’.
Mottley quoted Inniss as reporting, “If funds are not urgently sequestered to correct the multiplicity of problems plaguing both our sewerage treatment plants and their surrounding networks, we face the real possibility of their soon collapse.
The report also revealed that “the South Coast Sewerage Treatment plant has been virtually non-functioning for over a year, as over 90 per cent of the sewage entering the plant is now being diverted from the influent pumps to the effluent pumps”.
According to the Opposition Leader, the report was sent to BWA Chairman Dr Atlee Brathwaite and copied to the Minister of Water Resource Management Dr David Estwick on September 10.