Come clean!

VISITORS WANT GOVT TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR SEWAGE PROBLEM

A horrible stench and murky waters are not enough to drive visitors Dwain and Lizette Bell away from Barbados.

However, the Canadian couple is appealing to local authorities to take ownership of the situation on the south coast and deal with it promptly.

Canadian visitors Dwain and Lizette Bell

Speaking to Barbados TODAY this evening following a day of exploring, the loyal tourists, who have been visiting the island for the past 12 years, advised the powers that be not to wash their hands of the dirty and “unfortunate” situation.

“The situation is just unfortunate. Someone is not taking responsibility for what happened. I think someone needs to take responsibility for what is happening. The fact that someone is quoted in the newspaper as saying it isn’t sewage going in there to me is the wrong thing to say. Say it’s unfortunate, say we’re investigating, and say we are going to look into fixing it. Don’t wash your hands of it. Take ownership of it.

The murky waters at Worthing Beach, Christ Church.

“This is a country that survives on tourism, and by doing that it makes you wonder what else is there behind the scenes that you are not seeing if you peel it back. And it makes you think what can you really trust of the Government,” Lizette said, making clear she also reflected her husband’s sentiments.

She said they love Barbados and they would keep visiting. However, she said the entire raw sewage issue made them rethink a decision to buy a home here. She also cautioned Government not to make decisions that would turn people away.

“We have talked a lot over the years about buying a place here and our friend Russell, who is from here originally, has thought about buying a place here and that has put him off.  If you’ve got a natural resource that your country relies on then you need to protect it and use it to your advantage; don’t abuse it because you think people are not paying attention and not looking at it,” she stressed.

For the husband and wife, Barbados feels like home and they talk about the island and its people with a degree of passion found in those with an emotional attachment to the country.

They have brought their children and grandchildren here twice for Christmas, and they said they felt comfortable here.

It was for this reason they found the episode troubling, Lizette said.

“I don’t feel bad for myself or for our experience, I feel for the others. If this were happening down at Sandals, something would have been done immediately; if this were on the west coast where all the big resorts are, something would be happening. But this is a local area where people have guesthouses and have visitors here over and over again. It’s those people I feel for. The guy who has the beds and the umbrellas on the beach, he’s suffering. He says he is not because he still lives in a beautiful place, but he isn’t earning his income. The restaurants by the road that have the bad smell by them, those are the people I feel for, they are here and trying to make ends meet,” she stressed.

The couple, from Vancouver, Canada, is staying at an apartment in Worthing, Christ Church, the epicentre of the problem. They have seen the drama unfold, and do not believe the authorities that the sewage had not seeped into the sea.   

“It’s just a shame what’s happening. The smell is awful. I know what a swamp smells like and that’s not swamp we are smelling. That sewage going in there and the colour that it was, and seeing the black line just going through the water, it’s just a shame seeing it all,” she told Barbados TODAY.

The Bells return to Canada on Saturday after a two-week stay. They have not allowed the situation to cripple their holiday, taking the opportunity to explore the island.

“The experience with the ocean is the negative part of it and it’s more because we love the area so much . . . . I love to swim so my ritual is usually to swim back and forth between the rocks and really build up my strength while I’m here. Then we also spend a lot of time down on the beach just hanging out and relaxing.

“This time the ocean isn’t good so it has given us the opportunity to go out exploring. We have walked to Oistins twice to pick up our fish, we have walked into Bridgetown, yesterday we walked to Carlisle Bay and today we went to Accra Beach.  So we really had the chance to explore a bit more, and see more. We have liked it very much,” she explained.

davandrababb@barbadostoday.bb

7 Responses to Come clean!

  1. Fran December 7, 2016 at 3:07 am

    We normally visit in February for 10 days, as we love Barbados and the caribean sea, have been visiting for over 7 years now. We also the love fact of the cleanthliness of the island and being able to drink the water and never get ill, reading this has made me question do I want to return as I don’t want travel thousands of miles to swim in sewage !

    Reply
  2. jus me December 7, 2016 at 4:37 am

    What a load of old BELLS!!!

    Wait till you develop something serious medically and SKIN YUH TEET then.

    As tho there is not enough in the ocean and in the street,now we newspapers full of it.
    If it was in Canada in your home place, you would be a lot more critical.
    Get real please.

    Reply
  3. Gail Agard Wallace
    Gail Agard Wallace December 7, 2016 at 4:46 am

    Hepatitis C….. right there. And many more sicknesses. Wake up.

    Reply
  4. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner December 7, 2016 at 7:44 am

    This couple makes some good points but politicians in hoping problem goes away mode.Keep denying there is a sewerage problem and not find a permanent fix not temporary stop gap crap like how pot holes are done.

    Reply
  5. James Franks December 7, 2016 at 10:28 am

    Barbados was already down for the count before raw sewage ran into the streets ,beach and sea.
    Now it has suffered a knock out blow to tourism, even as the so called Government denies that there is any problem.
    Unbelievable,they take us all as fools.

    Reply
  6. Greengiant December 7, 2016 at 11:36 am

    I’ve lived on the south coast all my life and has swam, spear fished and enjoyed the beautiful beaches along Hiway 7 from Inch Marlow to Bay Street.

    For several years there were employees of the SSA whose job included clearing the beach end of inland water courses so as to avoid flooding on coastal areas during heavy rains. Whenever there was high levels of rainfall the water level in that swamp would rise to levels that threatened homes and properties between. Amity Lodge, Worthing and St. Lawrence the sludge gate on the beach would be opened to reduce water levels in the swamp. This activity and the opening of now blocked beach side water courses would always lead to highly discoloured ocean with an awfully fowl odor. Maybe this is the first time the gate has been opened in a very long time with many Barbarians not familiar with this but I can recall having to endure this while enjoying live entertainment and a banks beer by Caribbean Beach Bar on several occasions in the 70s and 80s. Water sampling will tell us if there’s raw sewage in the water or not but this whole case of speculation and International scandal has been driven by unreliable means of communication. While we are in the 21st century and need to embrace the global communication capacity of our global village our people need to be made to realize the consequences of circulating scandalous and defamatory damaging information. I can assure you that should the government change tomorrow this issue will be speedily legislated. Seeing that persuasion has failed it’s now time to legislate. Unless facts are produced I don’t believe it’s sewage and thats based on years of experience growing up in this environment.

    Reply
  7. Kevin December 7, 2016 at 11:56 am

    I traverse that area 5 days a week to and from work. At certain times, the swamp waters always had a pungent smell. This is not the first time that the sluice gate had to be open to let the black/ brown brackish water from the swamp into the ocean. They aint do it in a very long time so I guess Bajans forgot or pretending it never occurred.

    Reply

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