Rains add to Diamond roads deteriorations
-residents call for Govt. intervention
The May-June rains are here and are contributing to the deplorable condition
of roads in the Diamond Housing Scheme, East Bank Demerara.
Huge potholes, slush, and flooding in certain sections are some of the challenges residents encounter.
Commuters of Avenues ‘A’ and ‘B’ are now faced with a 10-minute increase on their travel time in and out of the area. Taxi drivers have increased their fare to $400 and are promising to go higher if the roads continue to deteriorate.
Earlier this year, some residents pooled resources and smoothed Avenue ‘A’ road. Those minor rehabilitation works could no longer withstand daily traffic and heavy downpours. However, the works provided temporary relief to one year of bumpy travel owing to the lack of maintenance by the Grove/ Diamond Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC).
Residents stressed that complaints to the NDC and Government Ministers are unheeded. They said that during visits to the community by Minister within the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development, Norman Whittaker, promises were made to rehabilitate roads and clean the drains.
Residents stated that if those promises were fulfilled they have not seen the evidence. They noted that Whittaker spoke of the Community Road Improvement Programme (CRIP), which will see roads being rehabilitated in the area.
Road development under that programme has stalled since a criterion was the refurbishment of the NDC building. Currently, action is in the court to determine the ownership of the building.
According to residents, they are fed up of this excuse and are demanding that Government reconstructs the roads.
“Housing Minister Irfaan Ali always saying road development has to do with occupancy rate being a certain percentage. If you come here almost every lot has a house…Only about 16 lots empty so we should get good roads…We are not asking for a swimming pool,” a resident said.
Another resident emphasized, “It takes longer to reach Avenue ‘A’ third corner than it takes from Georgetown to Diamond entrance when traffic is light…That can never be fair…Imagine if you in labour and you have to come out of there to go to the hospital.”
In addition, other roads in the Diamond housing establishment are deplorable. Some of the holes in the roads have become ponds while some roads are impassible if the vehicle is low.