Ah whey de toilets gorn? MP Walker asks Government Bench about fixtures donated to Barbuda-hurricane relief since 2017

Prime Minister Gaston Browne employed “righteous indignation” to dodge a question put to the Government Bench by the Barbuda representative during his wrap-up of the Budget Debate on Tuesday, March 14.

“Ah whey de toilets gorn?” is what MP Trevor Walker asked the Lower House as he made his contribution to the sitting.  

In an apparent attempt to jog his colleagues’ memory, Walker recalled that a certain number of housing fixtures had been made to the residents of Barbuda, whose homes had been either destroyed or badly damaged during Hurricane Irma in 2017.

Referring to his documents, Walker reminded the Government  Bench that the Governments of China, the United Kingdom and Trinidad had donated scores of toilets and sinks to the hurricane-relief efforts.  

But, six years later, he says, these fixtures – consigned to a government senator – have not yet been delivered to those for whom they were intended.

However, as Finance Minister Browne closed the Budget Debate, his only response – delivered in outraged tones, no less – was to confirm that the toilets and sinks had been received by the National Office of Disaster Preparedness (NODS).  He offered no answer to where the fixtures had gone since.

Among residents on Antigua, however, there is speculation that the missing fixtures were incorporated into the government’s housing developments.