3450669
Residents of Sahai Trace, St Croix Road, Princes Town, put up a new street sign in the name of Rural Development and Local Government Minister Kazim Hosein yesterday, during a protest over a landslide in the area.

Fed up of being ignored by the authorities, residents yesterday put up a a street sign named after Local Government Minister Kazim Hosein during a protest over a massive landslide in their Princes Town community.

Residents of Sahai Trace, St Croix Road, complained that the landslip is not only endangering their lives, but it is also affecting their livelihoods.

More than half of the road has caved in and the erosion is now mere feet from the home of stroke and heart patient Angela Mc Farlane.

While they have written to the Princes Town Regional Corporation to have Sahai Trace officially renamed after the minister, the residents have planted a sign next to the existing street sign.

They are hoping that this would get Hosein’s attention.

Resident Sherifa Balgobin said they have been writing letters to the relevant authorities since 2018.

“Also, we have this letter here that we are going to send to the regional corporation concerning a name change on this Trace to Mr Kazim Hosein Trace. So Mr Kazim if you’re listening please we are requesting you come and fix your Trace, please,” she lamented.

Noting that roughly 50 families are residing in the area, she said the landslide is endangering their lives.

While there is another route, she says the road is deplorable and there are no street lights.

Mc Farlane, 59, said, “This is affecting my house because it starting to move. Everything passing in my garage. My son can’t even work as he should and then I have little grandchildren this is dangerous they could always fall there. We have to be always looking out for them.”

Calling for the road to be fixed, she said vehicles would pull almost in her garage when they were passing the landslide.

Rayad Mohammed of Air Link Communications, a cable and internet service provider based in the street, said they serviced the community and other rural communities.

He said they wrote to the Ministry of Works and Transport in 2017 and in 2021 about the landslide.

Lamenting that their business was being adversely affected, he said, “We employ over 60 employees and to date, we have now had to divert our staff, incurring extra cost to us. We can’t get shipments here; we have to rent an outside warehouse to do these things to operate our business.”

Noting that they also operated a data centre, he said his employees would have to meet the supply trucks on the main road and bring in the supplies because trucks could not pass.

Naparima MP Rodney Charles said that while Sahai Trace was the responsibility of the regional corporation, the chairman has told him that they had no funding.

“The money has to be given by the Ministry of Local Government and because Minster Kazim Hosein is stingy with the corporation they are unable to fix this road,” he said.

Based on estimates done by the corporation, he said repairs would cost $2 million.

He said that was the sum of the budgetary allocation given for roads in Naparima, Princes Town and Moruga/Tableland.

He said If they get no response, the residents were prepared to take their demonstration to the doorsteps of the Ministry.

Guardian Media reached out to the minister but but up to press time, no response was forthcoming.