About $400,000 million dollars or just over twenty percent of St Vincent’s dispersed public death relates to disasters.
This was made public by Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves on Friday, June 1st, 2018, the start of the Atlantic hurricane season.
Gonsalves said this is so to either make ourselves more resilient or to correct, to recover from a disaster.
“This year alone in the capital budget it is close to 75 Million in terms of capital allocation for matters touching and concerning climate change resilience, and recoveries.”
“It is a lot of money and if you don’t want to take it abstract, take a drive from colonarie and each of the bridges built is as a result of the weakness of preexisting structures”.
“Take a drive on the leeward side, see the bridges we built as a result of disasters due to weather conditions. look at the one at Hope in Vermont and Cumberland, three in Chateaubelair; this is how the money goes”.
The Prime Minister said money to fix potholes across the country had to be diverted to fixing some of these bridges, and he, in turn, takes a lot of blows for these things.
“What can I do, these are the choices”.
Gonsalves said a lot of our people live on hillsides, riverbanks, and the seafront, therein lies our problem, he noted.
“Over the years people have removed the gravel and the stones, they have cut down the fat pork and grape trees and we are left more and more exposed”
Gonsalves said when there is a storm or a landslide you need immediate monies to put people in shelters.
“You have to feed them three times per day, but it might be a school, it’s a school, you to remove them quickly, which mean you, have to do some quick repairs to houses, or rent other houses so that the children can get on with their education”.
Gonsalves said in 2013 it was so bad he had to ask the Mustique Company to pay the government five years in advance.
Am giving you a practical account of how things are affected when disasters strike, Gonsalves said.