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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Six Men's Marina Hot Elections Topic

"GOVERNMENT HAS DISMISSED rumours that it plans to move residents of Six Men's in St Peter and allow a private marina to be built there.
Addressing the controversial topic of the St Peter fishing village during his general election nomination at Alexandra School on Sunday night, Prime Minister Owen Arthur said Government could not, under law, take the land of any private individual and give it to another private individual or entity to develop.
Saying such thinking was the essence of "voodoo law" and could not be done, Arthur said Government's plan for Six Men's was to build a fishing complex and an inland lagoon, since there was nowhere on the West Coast to harbour boats during the hurricane season.
"They used to pull up (boats) at Port St Charles. The Government cannot rely on that. We need a safe haven for boats," he said.
He said it would mean that people would have to be moved, since a fishing complex and a lagoon could not be sited on the land next to the west of the road in Six Men's.
As far as any private project was concerned, the Prime Minister said that an additonal separate development to the south of Six Men's, called Retreat, was the area for which private persons had applied for permission to develop.
"Now that is not the Government's project. It is not the Government's business. There is not a house on that private land. If those people want to develop a property to the south of Six Men's, not a house will have to move," he pledged.
Blaming a Democratic Labour Party (DLP) member for spreading news of the proposed private marina, he said the DLP should not even show its face in the constituency, since St Peter had had to endure more venom from that party than any other parish.
Blasting late Prime Minister Errol Barrow for saying Boscobelle was not on his map of Barbados and that its residents were behind God's back, Arthur blamed the DLP for abandoning a series of developmental projects in the parish.
Among those he listed were a proposed industrial estate at Six Men's for which land was acquired, but was abandoned when the DLP came to power in 1986; and a proposed fishing complex funded by the European Union, also abandoned in 1986.
Arthur said when the BLP resumed the Government, he therefore felt a duty to the people of Six Men's to start the acquisition again, but the owner of the land had since then taken legal action against the Government.
"The only reason why things haven't been settled with Six Men's is because it is still before the court," stated Arthur, who has represented St Peter since 1984."
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