Boyce: No disease outbreak from sewage crisis

The worrying flow of raw sewage on south coast roads has not led to any reported disease outbreaks, according to Minister of Health John Boyce.

The minister told a news conference today at the Ministry of Health on Culloden Road, St Michael that this was mainly due to Government’s environmental efforts.

Visitors and locals alike, including businesses mainly in Hastings and Worthing, Christ Church, have been complaining bitterly about the ongoing problem which began sporadically over a year ago, but which has since developed into what the Barbados Water Authority has described as a crisis.

Many, including the Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP), have openly expressed concern about the possible health effects, particularly for those who must regularly traverse the sewage-littered roads.

However, Boyce today said even though there had been no reported health issues, the country was adequately prepared for any possible disease outbreaks.

“Barbados boasts of very sophisticated medical services by way of nine polyclinics and their staff who work very hard,” the minister said.

In a Facebook post today, former Minister of Health Elizabeth Liz Thompson warned that the continuing problem posed a threat to the water supply, pointing out that “if the sewage is visible above ground and is bubbling up through any space available, it must be worse underground where water pipes are located.

At the same time, Thompson called on the authorities to state if random testing of the water quality was being done, and if not, when Government intended to begin “to determine if there is any intrusion of bacteria or other compromise” of the water system.

The BLP has demanded that Prime Minister Freundel Stuart addresses the nation on the issue, with the party’s leader, Mia Mottley, stating last week there was a high level of anxiety by businesses and hoteliers, whom she said needed to know what was being done, not only in the long term, but immediately, to stop the disturbing flow of raw sewage on the roads.   

“I am not surprised by the outrage of many Barbadians over the obvious indifference of Prime Minister Freundel Stuart to concerns of a large section of our population over issues of serious national importance. It is inconceivable that the south coast of Barbados is under filth and sewage and the Prime Minister has nothing to say,” Mottley said.

“The situation does not only affect tourists but it also affects Barbadian businesses and residents. This is no longer a case of what the Government is going to do a year from now with a new plant, but rather what will be done next week so as to ensure that people whose businesses are already on the brink can continue to live,” the BLP leader added.

However, Boyce, who updated the media on Government’s ongoing attempts to bring relief to affected residents and businesses, today said there was no need for Stuart to speak on every issue.

Instead, the minister said, his comments on the matter would suffice.

“I can tell you that I am having a press conference on the issue so I can’t tell you if or when the Prime Minister is going to have any further clarification on the matter. In all fairness, as the Minister of Health I am a member of Cabinet and I am one of the authorities on the matter. So I thought it was time that I said something, and some may say that I am late but it is important to have proper information before you speak,” he stressed.

Boyce said he was in touch with businesses that had been affected by the spill, including popular restaurant Chicken Barn, which closed its Worthing branch due to the worsening situation.

“One of my neighbours, the owner and operator of Chicken Barn which has been closed, and there is the Worthing post office which has been closed as well, and other business places have been severely challenged. I want to assure the country that the Government is on top of this,” the Minister of Health said.

62 Responses to Boyce: No disease outbreak from sewage crisis

  1. Claire Battershield
    Claire Battershield December 22, 2017 at 10:54 pm

    Do these people ever realise that everything they claim is a lie ends up to be true. It is time someone purchase a shipment of muzzles for them

  2. Wavney Rouse
    Wavney Rouse December 22, 2017 at 11:28 pm

    Just fix the damm thing before it get worse.. wanna in got that mesh floating around wanna GOOD HOUSE…. Nonsense..

  3. John Everatt December 23, 2017 at 12:03 am

    First of all, this minister has been telling Barbados that we need to prevent disease rather than trying to treat it once it has happened. Seems in this case he is telling us just the opposite ie that we have the drugs and doctors to treat any disease outbreak from the sewage. As well, I see no progress report from him in this article. In fact the public has had no progress report from the BWA either other than they are consulting and talking. What we want to know is what they are actually doing to correct this mess. They might have the decency to perhaps give us a weekly progress report. As it is it appears that nothing is being done except talk.

  4. Wendy Reece
    Wendy Reece December 23, 2017 at 1:33 am

    If you don’t hurry up and fix the problem there will be a mega medical problem on your hands.

    • Seanstar Bradshaw
      Seanstar Bradshaw December 23, 2017 at 6:01 am

      He doesn’t care hun

    • Gillian Skeete
      Gillian Skeete December 23, 2017 at 9:05 am

      Seanstar Bradshaw they all need to resign or be fired

    • Seanstar Bradshaw
      Seanstar Bradshaw December 23, 2017 at 12:09 pm

      They going down to the wire…. Only way to get rid of them is to vote them out. but I can tell u now that they’ll get back in….one thing I can say they seemingly got right is that the tourist are coming…it’s a pity that they can’t get the other two parts right…cost of living and sewage crisis…if only they could they would have been exceptional!

  5. Antheia Springer-Williams
    Antheia Springer-Williams December 23, 2017 at 1:49 am

    Antheia Springer-Williams please hold your tongue! A good “blasted idiot” at the tip of my tongue and what to do with them, but name calling roll of some people’s back like water on a duck’s back because they have no shame!

  6. Sharon Woolley
    Sharon Woolley December 23, 2017 at 1:57 am

    9 clinics would not be enough if you get a severe disease outbreak that could possible affect hundreds of people. Just because it hasn’t happened yet does not mean it won’t happen.

    • Seanstar Bradshaw
      Seanstar Bradshaw December 23, 2017 at 6:00 am

      Worst…he doesn’t seem to realize that it’ll affect him indirectly as well and the entire country, as it has! An outbreak will put more of a financial strain on government…common sense not common at all!

    • Sharon Woolley
      Sharon Woolley December 23, 2017 at 8:36 am

      Seanstar Bradshaw Of course and I’m sure if he was going to pay a lot for a holiday he would be the first to complain if he was walking in s—t and breathing in the disgusting smell let alone the poor locals who face this all the time – monkeys have more common sense than idiots like this

    • Gillian Skeete
      Gillian Skeete December 23, 2017 at 9:06 am

      Remember 2014 our chikungunya outbreak here? They could not handle it so down played it and went into denial mode!

    • Gillian Skeete
      Gillian Skeete December 23, 2017 at 9:07 am

      Seanstar Bradshaw tourism will be destroyed

    • Seanstar Bradshaw
      Seanstar Bradshaw December 23, 2017 at 12:11 pm

      Definitely..cuz now they finally got tourist coming then to have them walking and swimming in waste!

  7. Adrian Allison
    Adrian Allison December 23, 2017 at 3:48 am

    If it is one thing that always proved to be true about this Fraundel Stuart administration is that whenever they come out about denials it it usuall true. So considering their history as far as the truth is concerned maybe it’s time Barbadians start paying more attention to what’s going on on the South Coast with the disaster that the sewage project has become.
    Where they can prepare for the worse that can happen there they should take the appropriate steps to safegaurd themselves because we have a government who has lost touch with the people and their responsibilities towards us.

    • Seanstar Bradshaw
      Seanstar Bradshaw December 23, 2017 at 5:56 am

      They haven’t lost touch…they just don’t care!

    • Gillian Skeete
      Gillian Skeete December 23, 2017 at 9:03 am

      Yes denial yet again like back in 2014 when the entire region had thousands of people sick with mosquito borne disease chikungunya they swept that under the carpet here and on other islands! But here was shocking behaviour by MOH and still is. Take any and all precautions with this sewage crisis as it looks like a crisis. Lying to people is going to cost this country a lot more if anyone God forbids dies from exposure to raw sewage!!

    • Gillian Skeete
      Gillian Skeete December 23, 2017 at 9:04 am

      Seanstar Bradshaw they’ve lost touch with reality if they ever were in touch with reality!

    • Seanstar Bradshaw
      Seanstar Bradshaw December 23, 2017 at 12:04 pm

      Gillian Skeete whatever it is , lost touch or never been in touch …I hope bajans show their disgust when it matters. But just like last election I’m sure they’ll get back in.

  8. Maureen Burgess
    Maureen Burgess December 23, 2017 at 3:57 am

    Silly is Boyce name, is he waiting for an outbreak ? Wow Shame Shame Shame Shame on the MINISTER representive you need to go home and REST. BARBADOS don’t need You

  9. Maureen Burgess
    Maureen Burgess December 23, 2017 at 4:00 am

    Clowns at Christmas from George Street

  10. Adrian Allison
    Adrian Allison December 23, 2017 at 4:09 am

    Which means that the health authorites either knows or expect some type of disease outbreak.

  11. Conchita Moseley
    Conchita Moseley December 23, 2017 at 4:45 am

    Backwards instead of onwards, only in Bim.

  12. Tony Webster December 23, 2017 at 5:33 am

    Less said, the more energy to actually do wuk.

    Lord, do your stuff, and advance those hands on de clock…

  13. Susan Maynard
    Susan Maynard December 23, 2017 at 5:43 am

    I past every morning on the south coast on my way to work that sewage spell so bad,And by kfc omg it all in the road .wait big man u in sit down and wait for a outbreak fix the RH problem before it is to last .

  14. Susan Maynard
    Susan Maynard December 23, 2017 at 5:56 am

    I will look u to go south coast and stand up my kfc by the bus stop faceing the mall right there and stand up from 6am to 6 pm am and tell the bajans how u feel,

  15. Cecily Jones
    Cecily Jones December 23, 2017 at 5:59 am

    These clowns say something ain’t so, you know it’s going to be so.

  16. Ann Bholo
    Ann Bholo December 23, 2017 at 6:03 am

    Mr. Boyce I visited Lucky Horse Shoe during this week and I can see the sewage flowing from next door I had to leave the smell was awful.

  17. Tanisha Thompson-bharat
    Tanisha Thompson-bharat December 23, 2017 at 6:29 am

    Come on people get it together, you all are spoiling the country for tourist… a year after the big flood and there is still sewage issues on the south coast!

  18. Chem Chem Lavia
    Chem Chem Lavia December 23, 2017 at 6:29 am

    Seriously John Boyce that’s a stupid statement, suppose Barbadians start breaking out with collora then what, you would be all over the news saying now we have an out break you people waiting for an epidemic to fix the problem????

  19. Mervyn Hope
    Mervyn Hope December 23, 2017 at 6:34 am

    Sealy was unavailable so he lent Boyce a shirt!

  20. Denzil P Walker
    Denzil P Walker December 23, 2017 at 6:34 am

    Dude, public outcry, and perception is the worst disease from the sewage problem; good luck getting an antibiotic to cure that.

  21. Diane Warner
    Diane Warner December 23, 2017 at 6:53 am

    Get it sorted out before anything serious breaks out …raw sewage is a disaster waiting to happen! Barbados was a beautiful island and doesn’t need this bas press ..

  22. fedup December 23, 2017 at 7:43 am

    A boss clown. No disease YET!!!

  23. Lauraine Clarke
    Lauraine Clarke December 23, 2017 at 7:52 am

    This government so lay back and lazy,real zombies.

  24. Cherieleen Worrell
    Cherieleen Worrell December 23, 2017 at 8:39 am

    Why Boyce and Sealy don’t go and jump in the sewerage now to convince the public that everything is ok

  25. milli watt December 23, 2017 at 8:49 am

    wait Boyce no SPEEDO this time………..understand why cause it might cut off circulation to the brain located at the bottom of your feet.

  26. Michael Allamby December 23, 2017 at 8:54 am

    My businesses at Material Things Complex has been severely affected. I have never seen the Minister on the area. I have lost a tenant, threats by another to terminate the tenancy, staff falling ill, I am now ill myself , a high level official from the BWA appeared on my property uninvited 4 weeks ago and insisted that My property had contributed to, if not solely cause my flooding with sewerage, that official insisted that I retrofit my sewerage pies costing me thousands of Dollars , have not seen or heard anyone else about the matter, including the Minister , my property continues to gush sewerage . Countless persons tried to politicize a very serious matter, but offered no help. Needless to say I am sorely dissapointed and I am now at the end of my tether.

    • hcalndre December 24, 2017 at 4:13 am

      @Those affected; have not heard a word about any Class Action Law Suits, what happen with you bajan people, are you afraid of the politicians or this government? get Attorney Comissiong on the case.

      • Jennifer December 24, 2017 at 6:46 am

        @hcalndre – Do you not see that he is saying something about his pipes needing some kind of alteration. How can u sue someone if you are seemingly a part of the cause link.

    • Jennifer December 24, 2017 at 6:40 am

      @MA – what do u mean stepped onto your property uninvited?????

  27. Gillian Skeete
    Gillian Skeete December 23, 2017 at 9:12 am

    It’s not good! Bacteria infection of small intestines symptoms mild to severe and little ones die

  28. Cuthbert Lucas
    Cuthbert Lucas December 23, 2017 at 9:14 am

    You going to wait until an epidemic occurs before you do something

  29. Michael C. Mahon
    Michael C. Mahon December 23, 2017 at 9:38 am

    Therefore it’s perfectly safe….. I guess. No rush.

  30. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner December 23, 2017 at 10:29 am

    Not a surprise this statement from clown health minister like they will admit to disease outbreak if there was one and are these said clowns equip to deal with a outbreak like cholera if it occur.Are they going to wait until one occurs because the fact that nothing besides talk have occur and the sewage still flowing with no end in sight is mind boggling.This heath issue should have been fixed the first time it occur period but guess when ya have backwards useless people running a country what more can public expect.

  31. Lise Hansen
    Lise Hansen December 23, 2017 at 10:39 am

    How would he know? YOU are not sent to hospital with a note telling the doctors what is wrong.

  32. Sue December 23, 2017 at 10:56 am

    We have just returned from our annual holiday to Barbados. We shop at the Rendezvous “Big B” and on 2 occasions I walked to the market from Cave Shepherd. The stench is awful and fortunately, the drivers were very careful to either avoid the sewage or come to a complete stop before proceeding so as not to splash the stuff. We love the country but this mess is inexcusable and only a matter of time before a public health issue arises. And now you have this Boyce guy saying there has not been any disease outbreak because of this. Let the countdown begin Mr.Boyce because the longer you ignore this the more likely will be an outbreak.

  33. jrsmith December 23, 2017 at 11:11 am

    Its about time bajans stop assisting our useless politicians , to stay in office by they tricky untrustworthy behaviour…. Politicians in Barbados say things hoping the people pick up on them, this then divert from the real issue plaguing our country………
    Bajans should be more concern on how to remove politicians from office , as like this useless lot , what to do and the means require to do so………..
    What if this lot is back in power what the hell would bajans do , wait for another 5 years of pain to try and get rid of them…..I am so convince this lot would be back in power because the amount of bible whackers who support them………

  34. jrsmith December 23, 2017 at 11:16 am

    Politicians don’t really care because they do what they please, so long the 1%ers is ok in Barbados that’s good for them because they then have no one to be accountable to…………. Our country is totally wrecked , no real vision of a future………………………..

  35. jrsmith December 23, 2017 at 11:19 am

    As for the sewage issue this was in being for almost 2 decades and still cant be put right………………………….

    • Jennifer December 24, 2017 at 6:49 am

      U r saying that this problem existed for 20yrs????

  36. Helicopter(8P) December 23, 2017 at 1:14 pm

    All homes affected should be sent water purification tablets just to be safe! The problem exists at present with the leadership of the minister of health. I can see if an epidemic or casualties pertaining to the sewage spillage; that the Prime Minister be spotlighting and up-dating the citizens on the dicrepancy.

  37. Buun December 23, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    Why did he not tell us this why standing next to the flow of raw sewage on south coast roads? I guest he not a man of his words! Go tell it to the Devil!

  38. Buun December 23, 2017 at 5:50 pm

    Actually the whole DLP party should hold a news conference next to flow of the raw sewage on the south coast and let world know they see no heath threats and prove it by walk in it and take they shoes home without cleaning them because that is what most people are doing when they walk around that area.

  39. Reginald Eckstein December 23, 2017 at 8:25 pm

    WAKE UP BARBADOS +++++++++++++++++++++++
    The clock is ticking and you cant drink your way out of this mess.
    How does an island with such highly educated people become the next Venezuela ? Hide your dogs people, there may be human feces floating in the streets of Barbados now but those streets will turn bloody when your dollar gets devalued and you wont be able to buy the toilet paper to wipe your sorry asses. FYI, there are no labor parties left in the world except in Barbados. WAKE UP…….

  40. hcalndre December 24, 2017 at 4:26 am

    Would this lot got the balls to come to the people and beg for another 5 years plus.

  41. Jennifer December 24, 2017 at 6:59 am

    As for this mugin minister. Up to now he has not said anything of essence, now u c y it is called a “press/nuttin” conference. And believe u me it is by the tender mercies of the heavenly father that there is not an out break of any kind in this place. On a good day people wait 2 days to be seen at the QEH, none or minimal supplies insitu. Just imagine an outbreak. Folks just stay home and purge regular and top up with lemon water and Cinnamon stick tea.

  42. Richard Johnston December 24, 2017 at 7:34 am

    It’s comforting there is no outbreak of disease … until there is an outbreak of disease.

  43. Ralph W Talma December 24, 2017 at 8:35 am

    The longer this problem is allowed to continue, together with the world wide publicity it is now receiving on the Internet, will result in fewer tourists visiting the Island; to the severe detriment of the profits of a variety of businesses. This is really bad news folks.

  44. Alex Alleyne December 24, 2017 at 12:00 pm


  45. Jennifer Spence December 26, 2017 at 5:36 pm

    As a visitor I walked along the street a few days ago to go to the grocery store. The smell was horrible and thanks God it wasn’t raining or I would have walked through it in my flip flops. There is a break in the sewer line and needs to be taken care of for the sake of all people and animals on the south side. I feel sorry for the businesses along this street.


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