In an emotional address today from the floor of Parliament, MP for St Michael South East Santia Bradshaw called on Government and the National Housing Corporation (NHC) to do better.
Bradshaw, who at times appeared on the verge of tears, made the plea following the death of a former constituent Kyrique Boyce, last Thursday.
The 17-year-old lost his life after falling into a 100-foot well at Martin Road, The Pine.
Bradshaw said the state of affairs at some of the NHC-owned housing developments was shameful and called for someone to be held accountable for Boyce’s death.
The Minister of Education, Technological and Vocational Training said there should never be a repeat of that tragedy.
“I am deeply pained to know that there are persons who I don’t know how they can sleep at night in good conscience, knowing there are persons who are in deep mourning, knowing that there are things which could have been done, in terms of a systematic maintenance programme being put in place across all communities to ensure better can be done for the poorest and most vulnerable in this country,” Bradshaw said.
“I am not here today to speak on this resolution to cast blame, but I feel that I have a responsibility to those that I represent, to speak to a situation that must never be allowed to happen in this country ever again in relation to housing and the management of estates under the control of the Government of Barbados.
“This is a matter that cuts to the heart and the core of what we must stand for as a Government and certainly as a NHC,” she added.
Bradshaw said “people must be held accountable for poor workmanship, they must be held accountable for inspection, they must be held accountable for supervision.”
She said a sense of urgency never before seen at the NHC was now needed.
The Minister stressed that even though Government had a lack of financial resources, more could have been done to prevent Boyce’s death.
“That lack of accountability and the poor workmanship that has been displayed over the last couple of years, we need to bring it to an end. If we are going to get work done, we must have the highest quality,”Bradshaw maintained.
“You think it is right that nobody is being held to account when somebody dies in the most negligent way and that nobody can point a finger and say that something has gone wrong and somebody should be held to account?
“I’m not asking the minister to call names, but I want it put out there that it is not good enough and if I have to come down to NHC and ask the minister to bring the files and show me who are the people that worked on it, I want to put a name to the faces because I cannot explain to a family how one child has been taken in this way when something better could have been done,” Bradshaw said. [email protected]