By Shirley Thomas
RESIDENTS of Fyrish Road, Long Dam, East Corentyne, Berbice, say they are concerned that they now face a state of ‘near emergency,’ ever since a recent property owner converted their residential community into a virtual poultry farm. They are calling for immediate public health intervention.
The owner, who began rearing chickens on a mega scale about six months ago with three sizeable pens, has now more than doubled that amount and more so, has built a huge two-storey pen, bringing the farm closer to them than ever before.
Making their concerns known, residents told the Pepperpot Magazine: “Since this man opened up the chicken farm we can ‘t take the stench that’s circulating in the community. We can hardly breathe, because the stench is so aggravating. When we attempt to shut up the windows to keep out the stench, what we find is that we are trapped with what is already inside and it’s not going out. The smell is in our hair; trapped in our clothes, our window curtains and upholstery, so right now we fear that at this rate we will soon become sick. The entire atmosphere around here is polluted and it’s affecting men, women, youths and babies alike.
But despite their pleadings, the residents say, these continue to fall on deaf ears and according to them, they are getting no satisfaction. This has prompted them to vow to take the report further. “In fact, we want to know who could have been so irresponsible to give approval for the businessman to conduct such business in the midst of a residential community; It’s not affecting two or three nearby houses, but the entire area,” they reasoned.
The people of Fyrish Road Long are incensed that the businessman is rearing not hundreds, but thousands of chickens which he disposes of on a commercial basis.
Meanwhile, residents are also concerned about the effect this disregard for them is having on other residents within the community. Previously, they say, young men and boys from the neighbourhood would play cricket and ball games out in the open spaces, but now all the space is taken up and they have nowhere to play, so some of them are seen sitting on rails smoking which is bad for their health. The community is bemoaning this kind of behaviour, calling it counterproductive.
In addition, the new trend adopted is that a tractor would drive into the area filled with garbage, which is dumped into a trench in the area. Reports are that other persons from outside the area are now doing likewise, hence the community is in crisis.
The residents of Fyrish Long Road are appealing for immediate intervention into this state of affairs.