I wonder if that excellent investigation by the Integrity Commission which unearthed alleged corruption at KSAMC and conflict of interest with a top executive at NWC will cause the Holness administration and its minions to stop harassing/maligning that institution and allow it to do its work in peace!
Or, will the spotlight now turned on the corruption at the Building Department of the double-dealing KSAMC be just a talking point or will something be finally done about that institution that has caused nothing but grief for many struggling homeowners in the corporate area?
Me, hold my breath? No way!!.
I am, of course, referring to the Integrity Commission’s exposure which caused NWC top boss Mark Barnett to be sent on leave by the NWC.
The ‘delinquency’ of the Building Department is not new and it has cost the municipality, homeowners, and taxpayers, dearly over the decades.
Right now, the spotlight on that department has to do with new developments in upscale areas but the headaches the department caused over the years have long been visible in places like Richmond Park, Eastwood Park, and Bedford Park.
I resided in Bedford Park for decades, and their refusal to prosecute businesses that operate there illegally caused nothing but frustration for us forever, despite the fact that the breaches were reported ad nauseam.
Not to mention the unnecessary cost to taxpayers in general. For, the commercialization of residential areas causes the rapid deterioration of the roads which were never built to the standard necessary to withstand commercial activity. So, on the rare occasions when the authorities repair these roads, it’s the general public that has to foot the bill.
Why? Because “Money talk and bull#&@%** walk!”
That is what the first operator to breach our covenant told residents when he turned his home into a heavy-duty commercial operation and a delegation approached him. And yes, the KSAMC refused to do anything about it, so more and more illegal operators followed suit until the road became almost undrivable. The entire area deteriorated and life became miserable for homeowners despite regular reports to the so-called regulators, the KSAMC.
As a victim of that corrupt municipality, I know them well. Yup, and there have been many successive administrations at that sewer pit.
I couldn’t believe it when I recently heard an apologist saying the problem at KSAMC was that they didn’t have the funds to employ enough building inspectors!
Do you know what the penalty for operating businesses in residential areas is? If my memory serves me correctly, it is in the range of $25,000 per day once the infractions continue. And they were always reported and totally visible!
But while the violations continued for all to see, the KSAMC happily gave up that revenue because individuals at the monitoring and enforcing institution were being paid millions not to enforce the laws. So, as the neighbourhoods became run down, people who had worked long and hard to own a home had to move out of sheer exasperation.
The unprosecuted violations over the decades elicited an occasional report in instigative journalism, but successive administrations would do nothing about the disgraceful and outright corruption at that municipality, so one can only assume they are all complicit!
Now it continues, not only with the commercialization of residential areas but also with rampant building violations in apartment developments in areas with large lots.
That’s what the much-maligned Integrity Commission has brought to the fore by the exposing the NWC boss and “delinquency” at the municipality.
Will the exposure lead to any cleansing of the stables at KSAMC?
I doubt it, for we are notorious for our love of nine-day wonders when a “bagga mout” prevails but no action is taken.
Many decades ago, it was reported that the late Sir Alexander Bustamante had once disbanded the KSAC because of the entrenched corruption there. After my experience with that institution, as far as I am concerned, the time has long passed for another cleansing there.
If the latest Integrity Commission report leads to that action, they will be more than well worth their existence, despite the determination by senior politicians to destroy them.