Green works for second term in St Elizabeth SW

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BLACK RIVER, St Elizabeth — Confidence is extremely high for Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) incumbent Floyd Green, as he says his track record of achievements is more than sufficient to not only retain the St Elizabeth South Western constituency as Member of Parliament, but to increase his margin of victory at the September 3 polls.

Green, who is vying for his second term with his self-styled ‘BarbaGreen’, is undaunted by his opponent, the People’s National Party’s (PNP) Ewan Stephenson.

“… A lot of work has been done across the constituency in this first term. We are focused on a lot of the long-standing challenges that have affected the people of South West St Elizabeth. We have focused on roads, water, health system, education system, and there are a lot of noteworthy projects,” Green told the Jamaica Observer last Thursday.

“In relation to roads, in every single division we have done significant roadwork… People used to block the road from Fullerswood to Mountainside because the road was so bad, that journey would take at least 25 minutes, it now takes five minutes because of the quality of work,” he added.

He said there is need for a second term to continue the work of improving infrastructure.

“…It is important to get a second term, because there are still more roads to be done. There are still more things to be done… In relation to things like water, we have laid a brand-new pipeline from Hounslow leading into Newell. We also laid a new pipeline from Williamsfield to Barbary Hall, and from Luana to Middle Quarters. We are doing a new pipeline now from Sandy Ground to Black River. All of that to improve our water supply,” Green said.

“In areas that don’t have water, like Stonefield, where we have had a long-standing problem with water, we have run new pipes. We are now doing a project with rural water to bring pipelines, for the first time ever, into communities like Lancewood [and surrounding areas],” he added.

Green emphasised that he has placed importance on not only infrastructure but education, with the building of four new infant schools in collaboration with private partners across the constituency.

Work is also ongoing at the secondary level, with the upgrading of Black River High to add a new classroom block, as well as assisting Newell High School with transportation.

In relation to health care facilities, Green said work has been done to upgrade the Black River clinic and the hospital has undergone renovations at the accident and emergency unit.

He said sporting activities, including football and netball, were revived during his first term in the constituency.

Green, who had defeated the then PNP incumbent Hugh Buchanan by 2,057 votes, is confident that he will increase that margin on election day.

“We are expecting to increase the margin of victory, we have worked very hard and the last time the people came out and gave us support and invested in us, largely because of the campaign we ran, but also because of some work we did prior as caretaker,” Green said.

“… People appreciate that one term is not enough to do everything that needs to be done. I believe they will go out and invest again to get further returns on their investment. We have been working hard and our organisation is in place,” he stressed.

Green has big plans for the heritage-rich town of Black River — a former auction town for slaves and historic firsts, including receiving electricity — inclusive of a museum.

“We have started the journey of turning Black River into the cultural heritage mecca of not only Jamaica, but the Caribbean… We redid the Zong monument, which has a lot of history in terms of slavery. We are going to do a museum in our second term,” he said.

“One of the big plans we have is to ensure that Mountainside is made into the Donald Sangster square. We plan to celebrate our National Hero Donald Sangster, who is from Mountainside… We plan to use the next term to turn his home into an iconic tourism destination,” he emphasised.

Green also has plans for the agriculture and fishing sectors, with irrigation projects to provide water to farming communities, the construction of a cold storage facility, climate change training, and equipment for fishermen.

“We are going to be working through the Government and private sector partners to build a cold storage facility in the Hounslow region so that our farmers will be able to minimise their waste to ensure that they have a more assured market, by being able to store their produce,” he said.

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