An elderly Grazettes, St Michael resident says he is currently living in fear that his home could cave in any moment now, owing to a massive hole that has developed at the back of his property.
However, despite repeated appeals to the local authorities for help, 73-year-old Julian Headley, who has been resident in the Grazette Industrial Estate for the past 50 years, said absolutely no one has come to his rescue – not even his parliamentary representative Ronald Toppin who he said had promised during the recent election campaign that if elected in the May 24 poll, he would ensure that his plight was addressed.
“This is what they always say, because he [Toppin] has not yet viewed the hole,” a disillusioned Headley told Barbados TODAY.
“I tell myself, you see me I don’t have to live as long as I live already, so if they come, they come, if they don’t come, they don’t come. God is love. You got to give He the thanks. He knows when, so all we got to do is pray.”
In the meantime, the senior citizen said he was faced with restless nights.
“I don’t sleep too strong and even though I go sleep early, if I hear ‘crack, crack’ I does get up,” he said.
Headley, who has virtually abandoned the back section of his home for fear that it may collapse without notice, explained that the gaping hole in the ground first emerged back in December 2015 and with every passing rain shower, it has gotten deeper and deeper.
This has prompted him to make several complaints, including to the Barbados Water Authority, the Urban Development Commission and to former Minister of Housing Denis Kellman.
However, Headley said sadly those complaints have fallen on deaf ears.
“When I went to the Minister of Housing he tell me he can’t handle it, so if I can handle it get a truck with some boulders. I tell he, ‘you is the minister and wunna force me to buy [this Government housing unit] and now you telling me you can’t handle it. If you can’t handle it, I can’t handle it neither,’” the elderly resident told Barbados TODAY.
With the hole getting deeper and deeper, he said he had to create makeshift covering with whatever materials he could find. Headley also said he has had to beg passersby, including children, not to walk on the lawn, particularly when it rains, for fear that they may be caught unawares
and fall into the open area, which is not fenced in.
He said he would be happy if at the very least he could get some boulders to better secure the area.
Efforts to reach Toppin and Kellman for comment today were unsuccessful. However, when contacted, an official of the Urban Development Commission, who did not want to be named, said he was not aware of the situation but promised to investigate it.