Press Release:- The Office of the Mayor of the Soufriere/Fond St. Jacques Constituency Council dispassionately dismisses the reprehensible statements by Ms. Emma Hippolyte- The Endorsed Candidate of the St. Lucia Labour Party in a Press Release with regards to access to Public Bathrooms by Soufriere Poor.
There has been an atrocious and deliberate disregard of the truth in Ms. Hippolyte’s misconceptions.
To state it categorically, The Council manages Six (6) Public Washroom/Laundry Facilities. One (1) at Barons Drive and Five (5) are located at Palmiste. The washroom facilities are proven to be very beneficial to the residents and are under high use contrary to Ms. Hippolyte’s proclamation of minimal use.
We respectfully, ask Ms. Hippolyte, was she only made aware of Public Facilities at Palmiste during a recent visit of the area? Had she ever visited the area since the Blackstone Houses were constructed?
The Council reminds Ms. Hippolyte that her party represented the Constituency for 19 consecutive years from 1997- 2016 and the washroom facilities received no attention from any of the Representatives during that period.
It is important to note that a complete rehabilitation of the facilities was undertaken by a former UWP Government between the period 2006- 2011 and there was not any maintenance carried on the facilities during the period 2011- 2016.
In 2016, the present Council inherited dilapidated Public Facilities with dysfunctional units, defective fixtures and leaking sewers at Palmiste and Barons Drive respectively.
The Constituency Council Office in collaboration with Anse Chastanet/Jade Mountain completely rehabilitated the Barons Drive Public Facility and throughout the past Four (4) years in collaboration with the Office of the District Representative, The Soufriere Foundation and the Constituency Development Program, there have been constant improvement and repair works done to the Palmiste facilities.
Whilst Three of the Five washrooms are fully operation, the Council is endeavoring to address the structural and technical issues affecting the remaining two (2). The Council again remind Ms. Hippolyte that the facilities she speaks of, were decommissioned during the period of 2011- 2016 and there was no attempt to address the barrage of issues affecting the facilities.
Ms. Hippolyte should have known that most residents have access to running water in the area and hence the measure during the former administration to reduce the number of public standpipes that were available to the residents.
We wish to remind the former Parliamentary Representative of Gros Islet that the use of the washrooms follows the guidelines and minimum charge throughout the length and breadth of the country. Did she ever requested or lobbied for charge free washrooms for the residents of Gros Islet when she represented them?
It beckons the question, could Ms. Hippolyte have used her influence in her previous capacities- Director of NIC, Member of Cabinet, Parliamentary Representative and as a native of Soufriere to initiate the demands she is requesting today and to elevate the residents from her descriptive fettle?
The Council is proud of our role in supporting and responding to the needs of the constituents. The Council ensures that all Public Facilities are affordable and accessible. Our Public washrooms remains open and were fully operational during the national scale down in response to Covid 19. Presently the Constituency Council have increased personnel to serve the public with extended hours.
It is regrettable, in a shot for Ms. Hippolyte to score political points that she would have use her ineptness to portray the residents of Palmiste in such a disparaging and undignified manner.
We call on Ms. Hippolyte to be accurate with her assertions and practice truth relativism and sensitivity in the exposure and classification of such human susceptible situations.