Staff of the Ministry of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change used Labour Day 2015 to clean and beauty its offices at 16a Half-Way-Tree Road.
Five offices operating under the Ministry are located at the premises. These are: Land Administration and Management Programme (LAMP), Environment and Risk Management Division, Planning and Policy Directorate, Land Directorate, and the Climate Change Division.
From very early, members of staff, led by portfolio Minister, Hon. Robert Pickersgill; and Permanent Secretary, Dr. Alwyn Hales, were seen at the location carrying out clean-up exercises and planting flowers and trees.
Chief Technical Director at the Ministry, Lt. Col. Oral Khan, told JIS News that the primary aim of the project was to beautify the environment. He also expects the savings from the exercise to be significant.
“It’s going to be in the thousands because it’s not only what we’re doing here today but the maintenance of what we put in that will also have to be factored in. It’s significant considering all the man hours. When you calculate that, it’s a significant amount,” he said.
Col. Khan also noted that “we are the Ministry of Environment and we want to create a better environment for the staff; beautify it with more greenery, more flowers, so when people come to visit here, they should feel that the staff here care about the environment. We do intend to maintain it so it reflects who we are.”
Minister Pickersgill told JIS News that since acquiring the property in 2008 there has been need for improvement to the grounds.
He noted that maintenance of any property comes at a cost and so the Labour Day exercise would indeed save the Ministry some money.
“Doing this on Labour Day is an excellent way of reducing the Ministry’s spend and increasing the comfort level for staff as well as the image of the Ministry. I wouldn’t want to hazard a guess what a professional landscape company would charge; it is not cheap,” he noted.
Principal Director in the Climate Change Division, Albert Daley, told JIS News that he was pleased with the decision to use Labour Day to beautify the grounds.
“This is an ideal time for staff on the property to make a contribution to improve the whole appearance of the area to make it a more attractive environment, so that workers will not only enjoy the inside of the building, but can also appreciate the lush greenery, the plants and the flowers outside,” he said.
By O. Rodger Hutchinson
Photo by: Donald Delahaye