Williamsfield roads in ruins
At a glance, the quiet rural community of Williamsfield in Westmoreland appears to have no compelling reason to worry. But the residents readily agree that road repairs and access to water are among their most pressing needs.
When the WESTERN STAR visited the community recently, several persons pointed out that Williamsfield and the neighbouring Naggo Town and Bird Mountain have been severely affected by the poor road conditions and the lack of water.
"It's just the road and water we have a problem with. Naggo Town and Bird Mountain have no water, and the road is bad, and yet the water pump is just around that way," said young resident Romeo Campbell, pointing up the road with one hand.
SPEED UP THE PROCESS
"It's a long time, for years, that this is going on. Mr Dwayne Vaz (member of Parliament for Central Westmoreland) came in the community and saw the conditions and he is working on it, but we want it to speed up," Campbell added.
Shopkeeper Dwayne Wynter noted the irony of the lack of access to water despite the presence of several rivers near Williamsfield, including the Venture River, which flows through the community.
"Rivers are all around and just a stone's throw away, and yet the people can't get water. That is the main cry of the people," said Wynter.
The lack of access to piped water in Williamsfield and the adjoining communities was a major point of contention during the 2014 by-election in Central Westmoreland, following the death of former member of Parliament Roger Clarke, who was born in Williamsfield.
At that time, residents of Bird Mountain complained that they had been promised piped water for years, but nothing had been done. Other issues that Williamsfield residents want addressed include the lack of a post office and job opportunities for young people.