Letters & Opinion

Don’t Take Soufriere Projects from Harold Dalsan

Image of a sectional view of the Soufriere Square.

THE Soufriere/Fond St. Jacques Constituency Group of the Saint Lucia Labour (SLP), joins with the people of Soufriere, in placing on record its profound gratitude to Mr. Harold Dalsan and the SLP, for the vision and foresight in conceptualizing, sourcing funding for, and facilitating implementation of two major projects in Soufriere: The Soufriere Square and the Old Trafford.

The Soufriere Square was conceptualized in 2014 with the central objectives of enhancing the aesthetic beauty of the town and providing an area for community recreation. Following several community consultations, the plans for the project were finalized, and included the Freedom Monument produced by Mr. Ricky George. With a grant of EC$2.5 million from the Republic of China (Taiwan), works commenced on the Square in March 2016 and was due for completion in October 2016. Unfortunately, with the United Workers Party (UWP) assuming office in June 2016, Hon. Herod Stanislaus and Prime Minister Allen Chastanet unceremoniously stopped the project, which was more than seventy (70) percent complete at the time. This was done without any consultation whatsoever and without any rationale for their action; and the result was the creation of an eyesore in the heart of the town of Soufriere for the last 3 years.

With general elections fast approaching and their popularity plummeting, the UWP Government has hastily completed the very same project, hoping to receive credit and commendation for it. However, the people of Soufriere are adamant in holding Herod Stanislaus and Allen Chastanet “criminally liable” for delaying the completion of the Soufriere Square by three years. The people believe that “Justice delayed is justice denied” and they are determined to hold Herod Stanislaus and Allen Chastanet accountable in the ballot boxes at the next General elections.

Disturbingly, the Old Trafford project suffered the same vindictive stoppage fate as the Square. The project was also conceived in 2014 and with public consultation, a proposal under the Basic Needs Trust Fund Eight (BNTF 8) was submitted to the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) for consideration and approval. After much discussion and consultation, including a visit to the CDB Headquarters, by the then Chairman and Executive Director of the Saint Lucia Social Development Fund (SSDF), the EC$1.1 million grant was finally approved in 2015, under the broad profile of Drainage and Access, for the construction of the project.

The Old Trafford project was set in motion during the second quarter of 2016, but was similarly stopped by Hon. Herod Stanislaus and Prime Minister Allen Chastanet, without public consultation and for no valid reason. Again, with general election fast approaching they have hastily completed the project, hoping that it would compensate for their delinquency and their contempt and disrespect for the people of Soufriere/Fond St. Jacques.

However, the Soufriere Fond St. Jacques Constituency Group of the SLP, is confident that the people of Soufriere will not be fooled, by the desperate PR and propaganda of a failed government.

The Constituency Group again extends its gratitude and appreciation to Mr. Harold Dalsan, former Member of Parliament for Soufriere/Fond St. Jacques, and the Saint Lucia Labour Party; for conceptualizing, sourcing the funding for, and facilitating implementation of the Soufriere Square and the Old Trafford projects. The Group also extends appreciation and thanks to the Caribbean Development Bank, for the grant of EC$1.1 million for the Old Trafford project; as well as to the Republic of China (Taiwan), for the grant of EC$2.5 million for construction of the Soufriere Square.

– SLP

2 Comments

  1. The Government of Saint Lucia under the then SLP started and The Government of Saint Lucia under the present UWP completed the square project. This is exactly how things suppose to work.

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