Mon | Nov 18, 2019

Communities to be cleared of garbage soon, says McKenzie

Published:Wednesday | October 23, 2019 | 3:12 PM
Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Desmond McKenzie (right), inside one of two garbage compactor trucks that were presented to the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA) by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) at the Office of the Prime Minister on October 22, 2019. Sharing in the moment is Minister without Portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister, Mike Henry (left). Also pictured are NSWMA driver, Andrew Stewart (left), and Managing Director of JSIF, Omar Sweeney - Contributed photo

Minister of Local Government Desmond McKenzie says, by the end of the week, several communities will be cleared of garbage caused by recent heavy rains.

McKenzie, who spoke at the handover of two garbage compactor trucks to the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA) by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), said while the rains were welcomed, they posed a huge challenge to infrastructure and the collection and disposal of garbage in many communities.

The ceremony was held at the Office of the Prime Minister in St Andrew Tuesday.

McKenzie said he had dialogue with the leadership of the NSWMA, and an “assurance was given that by the end of the week there will be a significant reduction in the pile-up of garbage across sections of the country”.  

He also disclosed that over $100 million has been approved for the construction of a bridge that will improve access to the Riverton Landfill, as the current bridge needs to be replaced.

McKenzie pointed out that plans are far advanced to purchase 100 trucks for the NSWMA, which will be the largest one-time purchase of garbage-collection vehicles for the agency. 

Meanwhile, Minister without Portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister, Mike Henry, said some 30 communities will be served by the trucks.

 The vehicles will be assigned to communities in Kingston and St Andrew, St Catherine, Clarendon, St  Ann, St  James, and Westmoreland.

Funding for the trucks was provided by the JSIF, under its Integrated Community Development Project.

Under a Memorandum of Understanding signed by JSIF and the NSWMA, the management and deployment of the vehicles as well as maintenance of the trucks and training of staff will be done by the fund.

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