Friday, April 19, 2024

Stop stealing water!


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THERE ARE SOME THINGS that are simply wrong and must not be defended.
Such is the case of the theft of water from the Barbados Water Authority (BWA), as has been disclosed by its management once again this past week.
We are blessed to have a good and dependable supply of water in this island. Perhaps we are also fortunate to be able to access this precious commodity at a relatively inexpensive price. And this is in spite of the island being a water scarce nation.
This says something about the emphasis placed on ensuring water is made accessible to most, if not all, homes in this island.
The compassion extended in not denying people the ability to havea pure consistent water supply is perhaps best highlighted even in the scattered communities across the island. Even in these places where people have set up residences illegally, water, even if controlled, is not denied.  
 Over the years our population and our consumption habits have changed. One of the challenges has been the increasing demands on our water supply. We need to become efficient in our water usage by ensuring greater conservation methods are employed. After all, water is our most precious resource and we need to manage it to the best of our ability.
It is public knowledge that the BWA is under severe pressure to meet its obligations – to provide a constant supply of water across the island; to replace aged mains; to ensure the new development projects can be undertaken in a timely manner. All this while it must also meet its obligations to its employees.
This company can be no different from other utility companies even though it is state-owned. So the same approach and results expected from our power and telecommunications companies must be expected of the BWA.
What the Water Authority must do is to institute better detection systems to show up any and all instances of theft of water. It must also not only threaten but institute punitive action against the culprits who persist with such behaviour. It must be firm and relentless in its efforts to clamp down on this dishonesty.
  One of its main challenges, however, has been its lack of emphasis on public education, which is a must today – from issues relating to conservation to enhancing customer relations and even the issue of theft of the water supply.
 The public must also play its part and not wait on the water company, recognizing that being an honest neighbour is still a good thing.
Let your neighbour know what he is doing is wrong and also inform the suppliers and the police.
The simple fact is that while some steal the water, other customers at some time will have to pay higher rates for that said supply.


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