letter to the editorDear Editor,

Allow me some space on your news media to try to correct a blatant lie which is being fed to the country and which is being swallowed by, it seems, everyone, including the media.

This has to do with the hospital project which has been the talk in Dominica over the past few days.

Before I begin, I must say I am not against the hospital project. Anything to upgrade the deplorable conditions at the Princess Margaret Hospital is good but we have to be truthful.

While the government has been touting the construction of a new national hospital, some photos submitted by the Chinese company involved in the project caught my eyes. The photos were all labeled as “Renovation and Expansion Project of Dominican Princess Margaret Hospital.”

The caption said it all. This project is not the construction of a new hospital but merely renovating and expanding the present facility.

If you own a house right now and you decide to add two rooms, expand the kitchen, paint the roof and add a fence, you cannot say it is a new house. A new house would mean totally demolishing the present house and building another one out of the ruins.

If you have a car and decide to give it a new paint job, tint the windows, put in a new radiator and so on, you cannot say it is a new car.

If the hospital is to be called ‘new,’ the project must start from scratch to be so named. According to the dictionary, ‘new’ is defined as “not existing before.” Additionally, US$40-million is not sufficient to build a ‘new’ hospital in the way that the project is being touted.

If you want to talk about a ‘new’ hospital, you don’t have to look far. In St. Lucia the ‘new’ Owen King EU Hospital was constructed to the tune of EC$167-million. That facility is the largest infrastructural project ever executed by the European Union in the Eastern Caribbean and it was built from scratch.

It is time the government stop fooling the people. The project is simply a renovation and expansion of the PMH, not the construction of a ‘new’ hospital.