No water in Maroon communities

July 31, 2018
Swimming Pool (Bathing Tank) that was constructed by the Maroons and is still being utilised by the people of Maroon Town and Flagstaff to this day.
Sign welcoming visitors to the Maroon ancestry community of Flagstaff.

Residents in the rural districts of Maroon Town and Flagstaff in St James have been living without piped water for more than 30 years.

But they are now demanding decisive action from the authorities to provide them with the commodity.

"No water is the number-one problem in Flagstaff right now Just ask anybody," Clive Lee told the WESTERN STAR. "A long time we no have nuh water up here. As you can see, some part of the road did dig up weh they replace the iron pipes with these plastic ones, but that a years ago, and we still don't have no water."

Despite their numerous complaints, there has been no support from the National Water Commission (NWC), the residents claim, forcing community members to rely on the rainfall gathered in a tank, which they call Swimming Pool, that was constructed by the Maroons in the 1800s.

"Thank God fi the Maroons because if dem never build that deh tank, I don't know how we would a survive up here," Lee quipped. "It never run dry, so a it the community depend on, but we have to walk some ways to get there."

The distance to the tank is a challenge for senior citizens such as Leroy Hinds as his inability to walk such a distance forces him to pay someone $600 to fill one of his containers.

But Hinds is adamant that action must be taken immediately to bring water into the homes of the community residents.

"The community have a lot of, history, and we have the [Heritage Tours] Visitor Centre and yet we don't have any water," said Hinds. "The youth dem never see water a run up here so. We need some change ... we need them to invest in water up here."

Derrick Kellier, member of Parliament for Southern St James, in which both communities fall, could not be reached for a comment.

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