Letters & Opinion

St Lucia’s confirmed insanity variant

By Edwin James

ELECTION fever is a prerequisite to a General Election, but this time around, we have witnessed an unusual symptom which appears to have an abundance of side effects. But more importantly, certain individuals who aspire for prominence and others for government subventions have displayed signs of an unusual variant type of insanity. Unfortunately, the current administration will have to seek additional funding for the Ministry of Health to address that new variant as it may very well represent another danger to society.

The desperation by the opposition in demanding an election prior to July 12th – the constitutional date is somewhat bewildering as their entire slate for the general elections remains unfulfilled. This, however, appears to be the modus operandi of a party which does things in reverse like calling an election one year before it is constitutionally due, but that is their prerogative. Every administration is given a five-year term during which period the electorate will decide whether they are satisfied or not and, in this case, the current administration decided to abide by the mandate given to them.

Moving on to a new agenda and bringing to the forefront some of the major aspects presently ongoing, we this week visited the St. Jude Hospital Project, the HIA Terminal, the Grace Water Treatment Plant, the three Call Centers in the South and the Cul De Sac Development. My companion at the various sites was a retired British Civil Engineer with forty-five years of worldwide experience who has been residing in St. Lucia for the last eighteen years. In concurrence with his observations, the quality and standard of the works at all these projects were rated as first class.

Though not fully completed, the St. Jude Hospital was simply amazing. Entering the complex, one could not but observe the dramatic configuration of the structure, together with the well-planned enhancements surrounding the project. The HIA terminal is now moving forward at an accelerating pace based on the green light received from the consultants, resulting in over 300 piles having now been driven and additional areas have now been cleared to accommodate the driving of another 600 piles in the coming twenty-one days. The efficiency and high-tech performance was extremely incredible and noticeable as the St. Lucians on the job associated with this technology have been grasping the technology available to them.

At the Grace Water Treatment Plant was a similar situation where Vinci & Company have been able to pass on some incredible technology to many St. Lucians involved with Wasco. At the rate this technology is being transferred, within a very short period of time, we predict many St. Lucians adopting the role of major contractors in that field. We have already noticed the trend in all the major road works where most of the work being carried out today is done by St. Lucians which is remarkable as the monies earned remain right here in St. Lucia.

Our next stop was at Cul De Sac where we witnessed the skills of Japanese engineers at work, another aspect of St. Lucian artisans who appeared to be grasping the new methods used by industrialized nations. It is therefore not only a project, but the training of St. Lucians to develop new skills. This process took place at the St. Jude Project where elven hundred panels were fabricated right here at home rather than doing so in Canada. The proficiency of some fifty St. Lucians has now created a new industry resulting in the same amount of panels being fabricated right here for the new police headquarters and judicial block. The contract for the long-awaited Millennium Highway rehabilitation was signed and delivered to CO Williams Tuesday and construction works should commence as CO Williams addresses the mobilization aspect.

In conclusion having encountered a Senator in the south of the island over the weekend, it was brought to my attention that several female employees have now moved to the south from the north, based on their employment at Intel IBO resulting in several small apartments being rented. This is an important step in the economic direction of the south where individuals normally traversed from the south to the north. Let us keep our fingers crossed that this trend continues, and we can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel for the southern part of St. Lucia which has remained in the doldrums based on empty promises for the last twenty years.

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