Bad weather has worsened the deplorable road conditions in Brasso Venado, Los Atajos, Gran Couva, Caratal, Corosal, Guaracara and San Fabien, said Tabaquite MP Anita Haynes and further threats will leave many communities marooned.
In a media release on Tuesday, she again issued a call for the Ministry of Works and Transport (MoWT) to immediately repair deteriorated roadways and dangerous landslips.
She said the latest addition to its “bad roads list” was the highly traversed Brasso Tamana Road which had multiple landslips, forcing residents to take risky journeys daily.
“The terrible road infrastructure throughout Tabaquite is not a mere matter of inconvenience, it is a matter of public safety that hurts residents’ pockets while inducing anxiety and stress.”
Haynes said when she took up office in 2020, roads identified for repairs then had not been touched by the ministry and the heavy rains had further rendered the many roads in the constituency impassable.
She said constituents had been prevented from getting to work and back home and the infrastructure had also forced the closure of the Brasso Venado Government Primary School.
“An alternate route to the school, via Alleyne Road, is also littered with landslips and is impassable to some vehicles as rainfall reduces the roadway to slush.
“With teachers no longer mandated to facilitate online learning support, students are facing serious learning loss if this situation is not remedied.
“In fact, following communication with the principal of the Brasso Venado School, I wrote to the MoWT in 2020 specifically calling for the worst parts of the Brasso Tamana Road to be repaired.”
Haynes claimed those letters were ignored and residents had no choice but to purchase material and attempt a temporary fix on their own.
“I wish to remind the Ministry of Works and Transport that they have a duty to all Trinidad and Tobago citizens, including those of rural areas.
“My office has conducted site visits and provided updates to the MoWT, I’ve raised the matter in correspondence, in the Parliament and in the media. Residents have also taken action – not only via protest but also by making attempts to repair some areas – and still, there has been no action by the ministry. This has resulted in persons feeling abandoned and disrespected by the government.”
She said residential and agricultural communities in areas such as Lightbourne Road, Houssa Trace and Bacchus Trace, were forced to use over dilapidated wooden bridges.
“We are constantly given excuses as to why work cannot be done – no money, no equipment, no material. What excuse will be provided should a tragedy strike?
“As time goes on, these issues become more costly to address and citizens pay the price. This is yet another example of citizens paying for the government’s inaction.”