RESIDENTS in the Sans Souci area of Castries have been left mystified by the no show of the garbage collectors for the past week.
Residents in the said area are used to a tri-weekly collection service where garbage is collected on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays; however, there has been a noticeable absence of collectors since midweek last week.
As a result of this no show, garbage skips and bins can be spotted along the streets overflowing with garbage bags.
One resident of Barnard Hill said “This is absolutely ridiculous! We never even got a notice or anything. And this area is already filled with stray dogs that will be having fun spreading rubbish all over the place and making the area look like the Dump.”
She went on to express her worries about the different pests that the garbage is bound to attract.
She said: “The Ministries are always talking about vector control, yet right here, so close to the city centre, the council is inviting rats, roaches and mosquitoes…look at this, it’s a perfect breeding ground!”
The VOICE contacted the office of the Castries Mayor seeking answers for the many questions posed by concerned residents, and was told that this is no fault of the Castries City Council; however, they are working feverishly to solve this issue.
Jason Hullingseed, who is the Press and Communications Manager for the Office of the Mayor, said in the past, the CCC held the contracts for Castries’ garbage collection, and sectioned the collection routes between Castries North, South East and West.
This he said however was discontinued years ago and contracts were handed out to private companies by the St. Lucia Solid Waste Management Authority.
Hullingseed said ever since being sworn in to office, the Mayor has made it one of his priorities to fix this ongoing issue as he said the current system makes no sense.
The VOICE also contacted the SLSWMA who acknowledged the problem.
Emlyn Jean of the SLSWMA said the current situation is as a result of vehicular breakdowns by the contractor tasked with garbage collection for the said area.
Jean said there has indeed been a high frequency of breakdowns within the company, and although the owner has tried to get back-up vehicles to help out in the past, his attempts were unsuccessful as the vehicles were all occupied.
She said one has to understand that there is a limited number of garbage collection vehicles, as it is one that is used solely for that purpose and nothing else, and so, not many people choose to purchase said vehicles.
Jean explained that there was a small breakthrough, as the contractor was on this occasion able to get help, and so some parts of Sans Souci were cleared on Wednesday.
The rest she said was scheduled to be cleared on Thursday.