The landslip along the Gran Couva Main Road. (Image: SHASTRI BOODAN)
SHASTRI BOODAN

Residents of Gran Couva in the Central Range fear that they may be cut off should a landslide located along the Gran Couva Main Road worsen. 

Villagers said the heavy rainfall that occurred in the last two weeks have resulted in an additional four feet wide strip of the roadway sinking further, between San Coco Road and Motta Trace. Residents told Guardian Media on Tuesday that they have had enough and called on the authorities to take immediate action.

Councillor Anil Balliram. (Image: SHASTRI BOODAN)

Anil Balliram, the Councillor for the area on the Couva/Tabaquite/Talparo Regional Corporation, said he and the two MPs for the area have been pleading since January for assistance.

“The Gran Couva Main Road falls under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Works and Infrastructure. This landslip was brought to the attention both MPs Arnold Ram (Caroni Central) and Ms Anita Haynes (Tabaquite), me, Councillor John Lezama, and the Chairman of the CTTRC,” Councillor Balliram said.  

“We came here with officials from the Ministry of Works and Infrastructure in January of this year and there was a commitment from the officer that they were going to do some piling and temporary shoring to prevent further slippage of the roads. Today nothing has been done,” he reported, saying residents are frustrated.

The landslip along the Gran Couva Main Road. (Image: SHASTRI BOODAN)

Councillor Balliram noted the issue of maintenance has been raised on several occasions with the Ministry of Works.

“Only one story from the Ministry of Works officials—they do not have manpower, they do not have equipment, they do not have materials. I am saying it is best they close down the Ministry of Works and Infrastructure because anytime we ask for assistance, they have nothing,” a frustrated Balliram told Guardian Media.

He noted that the PTSC buses have refused to pass in the area because of the landslip. He is concerned that should the landslip worsen, the rubbish collection trucks would not be able to operate in parts of Gran Couva.

Resident Daniel Collier. (Image: SHASTRI BOODAN)

Disgruntled resident Daniel Collier, 48, said the villagers are fed up of the neglect. He said the area has worsening infrastructure and is without a community centre and proper recreation ground. 

Collier told Guardian Media the landslip worsens whenever WASA turns on the water supply weekly.

“The mains under the road is leaking and this causes the landslip to get worse,” he said.

Resident Daniel Collier (right) stands on part of the Gran Couva Main Road that sank in the last two weeks. (Image: SHASTRI BOODAN)

Collier also pointed out that the bushes on the sides of the road and drains are neglected, arguing they cause flooding in low lying areas.

“They ent doing nutten, only pothole, everybody blaming somebody else. We need to get something done.”

Collier said if the residents get the materials to do the work, they will gladly fix things themselves. He said the government is being bogged down by employees who could care less to do their jobs or about the woes of the people.

“When a man has to do a whole day’s work for $200 from 8 am to 4 pm, they’re working from 6 am to 7am. For what? For benefit. No, we want road. We need the road fixed,” he said.