Prime Minister consoles Clan Carty Primary family in wake of tragedy

Prime Minister Andrew Holness holds the hand of Clan Carthy Primary School student, Naquan Smith while looking at the desk formerly occupied by Benjamin Bair, who died tragically at the institution in Kingston, on Monday (October 28). Among those also looking on are State Minister in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Alando Terrelonge.

Less than 24 hours after the untimely death of seven-year-old Clan Carthy Primary School student, Benjamin Bair, Prime Minister, Andrew Holness, visited the institution on Deanery Road in Kingston on Tuesday (Oct 29) to console Principal Sheldon Richards and the teachers and students, who have been badly shaken up by the mishap.

Tragedy struck on Monday (Oct 28) after Benjamin, who was in grade two, died after a garbage truck that was removing refuse from the school compound was suddenly set in motion, crashed into a parked motor car, and overturned on the youngster, pinning him on the ground. He died on the spot.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness is embraced by students of Clan Carthy Primary School in Kingston, during his visit to the institution on Tuesday (Oct 29). Looking on is State Minister in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Alando Terrelonge.

 “This is truly a great tragedy. It saddens me deeply and I am certain that the teaching staff and the school community, generally, are very saddened by this. We want to extend to Benjamin’s parents, our deepest sympathies,” Holness said.

The Prime Minister said the incident has sparked discussions about how school facilities are managed in relation to garbage collection, and safeguards for students.

He emphasised that “there is still an obligation on the part of the Government to review these incidents when they do occur, to ensure that they don’t reoccur”.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness views the accident scene at Clan Carthy Primary School in Kingston, where seven-year-old Benjamin Bair lost his life during a mishap on Monday (Oct 28). Looking on is State Minister in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Alando Terrelonge (right); and the school’s Principal, Sheldon Richards.   

To this end, Holness said the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information will be investigating the incident “to see what elements of it could have been prevented”.