Former President Anthony Carmona yesterday called for scientific heads at the University of the West Indies ( UWI) to come together and let ideas flow to solve the water issues facing the country.
Carmona spoke at the opening ceremony of the Science and Technology Week 2019, which was launched today at UWI’s Teaching and Learning Centre.
He said the lack of access to water for all citizens has been put on the back burner for far too long.
“I was pained when I saw in 2019, even taking into consideration the current extreme dry season, the many communities in TT which still lack access to safely managed and reliable water supplies. Has the university proffered advice on scientific and technological solution to the relevant authorities on how this endemic and protracted problem could be tackled?
"Perhaps this learned gathering in its deliberation could cause ideas to flow in an effort to correct this national shortcoming. Action must be taken sooner rather than later,” Carmona said.
He said complaints of inefficient and outdated infrastructure for the distribution of water in TT have been made for years and TT’s procrastination in ensuring the entire nation has water not only shirks the mandate to which it agreed in the UN’s Paris agreement for sustainable development, but infringes on basic human rights.
“The provision of clean drinking water and sanitation are essential for the realisation of all human rights. The right to water for personal and domestic use is not a privilege, and therefore it should be central to national efforts to achieve the goals and targets of the 2030 agenda on sustainable development,” Carmona said.