Readers and social activists by now, are familiar with the saga of “Save the Camerhogne Park”, which was sold or leased or given to a foreign “developer” by the NNP government – the new NDC government however, must now make a definitive statement as to its status – even though the parliamentary representative for South St. George – the Hon. Andy Williams ratified a pre-election agreement with Save the Camerhogne Park Committee to return the park as a public space in perpetuity.
THE NEW TODAY newspaper of July 16, 2022 has informed John Public that a group of unidentified citizens with the support of Camper & Nicholson Marina are proposing to develop a “green space” along the Lagoon opposite the headquarters of Bryden & Minors.
This area of the Lagoon which was filled as a temporary site for the casting of Camper and Nicholson extended berthing facilities, should have been removed and the site restored to its original configuration on completion in 2009 as per contract agreement with the Port Authority and the Physical Planning Unit (PPU).
Thirteen (13) years later in 2022, it still exists together with the derelict barge, which has become an eyesore and a haven for pushing drugs, which is now considered for a greening project.
A Willie Redhead Foundation Sentinel article in the Voice Newspaper dated October 6th, 2007 – titled “Our disappearing lagoon, which dealt with the filling of the lagoon to build cottages – brought an immediate response from Peter de Savary, who was then the “owner” of the lagoon – by letter from his lawyer, to publicly apologise for misleading the public.
Fortunately a pro-bono lawyer in the person of Hon. Claudette Joseph had to enlighten de Savary that the foundation has legal standing as a recognised heritage organisation to voice its concern, which silenced the so-called developer.
Fast forward: Ms. Sandra Ferguson’s fully researched presentation to the media dated July 18, 2022, has detailed the involvement of her organisation – “Citizens in defense of Grenada’s land and heritage” together with the residents of the lagoon area in partnership with the Willie Redhead Foundation, and has expressed her apprehension as to the greening proposal of the area as outlined in THE NEW TODAY of July 18, 2022.
The Willie Redhead Foundation is further questioning, what we perceived to be a piecemeal attempt to develop and enhance a small part of the Kirani James Boulevard in the interest of a few stakeholders, rather than a comprehensive plan for the entire boulevard as a 50th golden independence anniversary project for February 2024 as a PUBLIC SPACE (which it is) for the citizens of “Pure Grenada”.
The foundation is therefore inviting the citizens for the “greening project” to give further consideration together with their sponsors – Camper & Nicholson, into making the entire Kirani James Boulevard a tree-lined PUBLIC SPACE as a real boulevard for the enjoyment and spiritual uplift of all Grenadians and our visitors, “as we aspire, build and advance as one people”.
(The above was a presentation from the Willie Redhead Foundation)