Prime Minister Mia Mottley is assuring residents of White Hill, St Andrew that a more permanent solution to their plight is on the way.
In fact, she said her 15-month-old administration would be seeking help from the Chinese government to see how best to address the land shifting issues affecting the greater Scotland District area, of which White Hill is a part.
However, responding to questions at a post-Cabinet press briefing on Thursday, Mottley said it will take some time.
She explained that Member of Parliament for the area, Minister of Housing, Lands and Rural Development George Payne, was in discussions with Minister of Transport Works and Maintenance Dr William Duguid on the matter.
“So we are going to be dealing with all of the Scotland District, but yes, we will be isolating outWhite Hill, and Minister Payne and Minister Duguid are working with it, but you can’t do overnight, that which was lost in a decade and still be in the context of the Barbados Economic and Recovery Transformation plan,” said Mottley.
“I am in discussions now with the Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to discuss with the Chinese government how they can work with us to stabilize the Scotland District and to allow us to be able to deal with something as simple as the roads,” she said.
Her comments came on the heels of a fresh outcry from White Hill residents who have been complaining bitterly of neglect when it comes to garbage collection, frequent water outages and the fixing of badly-damaged roads, which have significantly limited their access to already reduced public transport.
Heavy rains in November 2014, caused extensive land slippage and rendered the White Hill main road impassable before it was condemned a month later.
While in Opposition then, Payne and other Barbados Labour Party (BLP) members complained that the then Freundel Stuart administration had abandoned the residents.
However, without giving a timeline yesterday, the Prime Minister said work was going to proceed “apace”.
Pointing to the scope of the problem, Mottley added that a process would be followed to avoid the recurrence of devastation in the area.
“It is not only White Hill, let’s be real, [it is] the whole of the Scotland District. The last government never told the country that there was a moratorium on development and town planning applications for large parts of the Scotland District. They were to do a study on the movement of the land and the stabilization. They never did the study,” added Mottley.