The office of Castries Mayor, Peterson Francis, has flatly denied reports that the the Mayor has proposed that a hotel be built at the location of the Choc cemetery.
“That is absolutely incorrect,” Press and Communications Manager, Jason Hullingseed, told the Times in relation to the reports that have been circulating via WhatsApp.
Hullingseed recalled that the Mayor, while on an official visit to New York recently, visited a cemetery where officials there outlined the operations of the facility.
He explained that the Mayor and his delegation observed ways in which Saint Lucia can improve its own services to the public.
“At the Choc cemetery we are virtually out of space,” Hullingseed explained.
He told the Times that the Mayor’s initial plan was to extend the cemetery to facilitate about 400 additional tombs.
However Hullingseed said the Mayor felt that the money for the extension could fund a new cemetery.
“We spoke to a few ministry officials who stated that feasibility reports were done on a new cemetery in the area of Deglos, so instead of spending a chunk of money to increase the number of tombs at Choc cemetery it is better that the cash be spent on the new cemetery,” the Communications Manager stated.
Hullingseed said the intention of the Mayor is to implement in Saint Lucia the cemetery management model he saw in New York, so that cemetery services here will be enhanced to include a chapel and a crematorium on the site.
“But as far as getting rid of the Choc cemetery to build a hotel on the site, that is absolutely false,” he declared.