“We should as a Nation give thanks to God for sparing us from the ravages of the 2019 Hurricane Season. Many storms made their appearance. We experienced troughs, tropical waves and cyclones, which caused coastal erosion and mudslides, as well as damage to a few private properties. Our road resurfacing was interrupted. But we give thanks,” said Prime Minister Harris.
He further added: “We faired relatively well compared to other countries such as the Bahamas. I thank the Co-Cathedral of Immaculate Conception for hosting our grateful Nation in worship last Sunday as we thanked God for his grace and mercies during the 2019 Hurricane Season.”
The prime minister highly commended the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) under the directorship of Mr. Abdias Samuel and the Honourable Vincent Byron Jr, who was delegated responsibilities as the Chairman of the Inter-Ministerial National Emergency Operations Committee.
“We experienced better levels of preparedness in 2019. The Committees responded well to adverse weather developments and quickly mobilized to deal with issues arising from the storms. Within 24 hours Joseph Riley of Stone Haven, Molyneux whose house was rendered uninhabitable, was relocated with his family in Basseterre. Roads rendered impassable by mudslides at Lodge Village were cleared quickly and SKELEC and Public Works were very efficient in dealing with falling electricity poles, overhanging trees and other encumbrances,” Prime Minister Harris said.
He said the country is working to ensure resilience to climate related disasters such as hurricanes and that NEMA will engage a group of experts “to conduct vulnerability assessments and provide long term recommendations to address a number of vulnerable areas in the Federation.”
The Committee will be chaired by Mr. Samuel and would comprise public and private stakeholders.