MP urges gov’t to release funds to assist drought-stricken communities

Mikael Phillips (left) and Prime Minister Andrew Holness at a recent function.

Member of Parliament (MP) for North West Manchester Mikael Phillis is urging the Government to provide funding to the municipal councils islandwide to assist drought-stricken communities as the country faces the threat of COVID-19/coronavirus.

“As has been done in the past, the government can use the emergency procurement powers to fast-track funding to the councils to help in slowing the spread of Covid-19 virus as the current arrangement is not conducive to the emergency facing the country,” Phillips said in a statement Monday.

He said many communities in his constituency and the entire parish of Manchester are facing drought conditions, but a release of funds to the councils can mitigate the situation and bring relief to the people.

Phillips said it is most important to heed the advice of the Ministry of Health that hand washing and the drinking of liquids are integral in slowing the spread of the virus.

He further pointed out that without adequate and reliable supply of water, residents will be unable to comply with the advice from health officials. The MP said that in light of the uncertainty and continuation of the drought, the Government should consider re-instating a Rapid Response Unit to supply water to communities affected by drought and/or other adverse conditions.