FOR everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven… a time to tear down and a time to build up… Ecclesiastes 3:1-3. The time to tear down is upon the powers that be; and the time to build may not be too late for the construction of a new and modern fire station to serve the nation’s capital and its environs. We are in a post-colonial era but our current fire stations, police stations and post offices among others are from a pre-colonial period.
Both present and past governments have acknowledged the horrendous location of one of the country’s main firefighting units at the Stabroek market square which is a nightmare for fire trucks to exit their location quickly in case of a fire. The mere fact that governments have allowed the fire station to remain at that location instead of a central position is a clear example of poor planning. Any proactive government would have done otherwise to protect the residents of the City. It is worth mentioning that the population of Georgetown and its huge influx of vehicles have outgrown its narrow and outdated City streets.
Having spent huge amounts of taxpayers’ dollars on fire trucks and equipment and to train firefighters, one wonders why the performance of the fire service in wake of the Brickdam Police Station fire was so pathetic. The present government has certainly, and rather ironically, been handed a golden opportunity to utilise public funds to build new fire stations and equip them with modern state of the art equipment so that the taxpayers could get their money’s worth. Also, the time has come for the government to haul the Durban Park Stadium down which has become an eye sore and relocate the fire station presently adjacent to the Stabroek market to the said location at Durban Park.
Leyland Chitlall Roopnaraine