Open letter to the international airport company authorities


Computer-generated image of welcome sign at proposed international airport

The building of the International Airport in the Wesley, Woodfordhill, and Palm Tree  [area] is generally seen as a welcomed infrastructure project to the area and Dominica. Finding someone who opposes the building of such a mega project is rare. The logical thinking is that such a project should bring meaningful increase in visitors, daily flights to transport fresh produce for export, and possibly an increase in stayover visitors.

The reality is that the likelihood of such a project [being] completed in three years as announced is very unlikely since almost four years have passed since it got on the way. Nonetheless, one wishes a speedy conclusion to the finished product. However, there are issues that must be addressed while this international airport project is ongoing because the safety and health of local residents are being jeopardized. Contractors cannot be allowed to work without adhering to existing rules and regulations, as they are constructing this project in a community where people live and work. The following issues need immediate attention to safeguard the health and lives of residents, especially the children in the community.

1. Trucks carrying dust-emitting materials such as tarish and dirt must be covered. Although directed to do so, this has not happened.

2. Regular meetings to update the community are not held leaving much to speculation on what transpires on a day-to-day, and week-to-week basis. Contractors are showing up with survey equipment on residents’ property without prior notification leading to confrontation that can be avoided with the appropriate person-to-person consultation by the appropriate authorities.

3. The issue of dust in the entire village continues to be a major problem that requires continuous wetting of the roads in the construction zone and the areas most often traversed by trucks. This is not done.

4. The indiscriminate detonating of [explosives] without warning at all hours of the day and night must be regulated. Villagers should be warned when such explosions are [scheduled] to take place. The explosions are causing stress, shake homes, and frighten residents.

5. It cannot be that people living around a construction zone outside of the designated airport area are subjected to the banging of truck tailgates after 10pm and up to 4am every day of the week. There must be limitations placed on these noises. There is a noise abatement act that seems to be suspended while this project is in effect. However, personnel need to be able to rest sometime during the evening and so this must be managed accordingly.

6. There should be no reason to sound horns at night. The horns can be heard all over the village and [serve] no purpose at night because drivers are able to see each other clearly.

7. The burning of cement bags at night cannot be healthy for villagers. The burning emits a foul odor which [suggests] that toxins may be present in the atmosphere. The obvious outcome is a health hazard, and this must stop.

8. Landowners are still unable to be compensated four years after this project started. This is so because of the improper way in which this project was initiated. Landowners were supposed to be notified, negotiation initiated, owners compensated, then the land acquired. The back-to-front way in which this was done is responsible in large [part] for the confusion that now exists.

And now, there is movement to acquire more properties although a large percentage of owners whose property was acquired almost [four years] ago has yet to be compensated.

9. Most landowners are unsure if and when they will be issued a title for titled properties that were acquired.

10. People were sent to a settlement area where improper roads and no electricity existed, and still [do] not.

11. Shop owners have not seen any increase of sales based on what should have brought a booming economy to the local area. In fact, shop owners are drawing the similarity in sales to the Covid-19 era. The obvious reason is because the Chinese and Indonesian workers are self-sufficient, bring in everything that they need, and have no requirement to purchase from the local economy. Lack of proper contract negotiation has resulted in the economic depression that now exists in the village.

These are some of the issues affecting residents of Wesley and the surrounding areas that need to be addressed.

Majority of Dominicans are in favour of an International Airport. However, the people who must live in the area [are ]owed a level of respect and courtesy. I urge the authorities to take these points into consideration and to advise, and more so direct the managers and employees on the project to be considerate and remember that there are people trying to live normal lives even as this project is on the way.

Dr. McDonald Thomas

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  1. April 5, 2024

    Dominica isn’t ready. Look how a simple city like Roseau was congested today. I had to park outside the city. If they move all the vendors on the road to a beautiful place attracting tourists, maybe! Perhaps ? From Salisbury to Roseau yesterday was taking me 30 minutes, now an all one hour. I don’t care if it is for the good of people. But ? But! The Chinese should build a Millenis or a Destreland, commercial group’s big like Roseau with air-conditioned everywhere and all what you want in one place. It’s not what I want, it’s what people want. Since I live in Dominica I understood that to buy somewhere is a nonsense. Why to buy something, do you really need it ? But when airport will be there we can still react, and if I don’t like it, thank you for upgrading the price of my land by twice.

  2. Bwa-Banday
    March 29, 2024

    TC enough talk! Time for action :twisted: . Ask them badman from Marigot to help with protest coordination and get on it since Wesley men no longer have Big Bhalls.

    Wesley people used to be strong and independent minded back then. Wha happen? Politicians like Glo cut their manhood? Where all the badmen that used to drive trucks and work the field? It looks like they all gone NY and Canada and those left behind have become girly-men. Man, shut down the darn place at the two main entrances of the village immediately and don’t allow no mongoose gang to reopen until ALL demands are met including payment to everyone, and I mean everyone is paid for property seized. Remember, those who use the night to their advantage are always ahead by daybreak.. :twisted: :twisted:

  3. Mac
    March 29, 2024

    The issues listed suggest that the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) that’s usually mandatory for such infrastructure projects, either was not done, or not done properly and that compliance to the social safeguards requested in the ESIA is being ignored. One is left to wonder therefore, if adherence to these basic social impact mitigation measues is an issue, how are the environmental impacts being addressed?

    The responsibility to ensure the contractor’s compliance to both environmental and social safeguard measures is part of the project management’s supervision function, with oversight by the appropriate Government regulatory authority.

    Therefore, such non compliance raises questions about the process for obtaining sign-off on the safeguards, the authority overseeing project management for their implementation, and the extent to which the project as a whole is being properly managed.

  4. Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
    March 28, 2024

    To the author of this pile of garbage, be informed that people are not opposed to the idea of building an international airport in the country: only a stupid person, or people might oppose that, however; we do detest where Roosevelt chose to pretend it is being built!
    Common sense dictates that Wesley village is not ideal for that purpose; had Roosevelt not been an idiot, would have utilized the more suitable place is in the back of Wesley extending towards Woodford Hill.
    Only an idiot; Roosevelt allowed his ego to influence him to literally destroy a historical Village as Wesley, including the historical Roman Catholic Church.
    Roosevelt has taken advantage of the people of Wesley, while the idiot who claims to be the representative of the constituency sits and allow Roosevelt his dog meet eating Chinese trample on the helpless people of Wesley.
    Grant, by the time it’s over, you too well be fed dog meat, I understand Woodford Hill people don’t have enough dogs to sell to Chinese.

    • April 1, 2024

      Man, just relax and watch that International Airport take off. Your wishes won’t come true, brother. You are just jealous and mad that it is not Fontaine building the Airport. We got more in stock to make you mad. Just stick your as. in Los Angeles and everything will be OK, your creep.

      • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
        April 3, 2024

        Are you not tired of behaving stupid, making yourself a confounded fool?
        What does it matter who builds an International Airport in the country?
        It’s a necessity, is it not?
        It’s more than necessary!
        Had it not been due to the stupidity of the late Roosevelt “Rosie” Douglas: Roosevelt Skerrit, Athie Martin, the late Peire Charles: Ian Douglas, and the remainder of the idiots who formed the coalition government which toppled the UWP; and bringing the International Airport to a halt during its first phase of development, there would be an international airport operating in Dominica for more than than forty (40 years) now!
        Just in case you don’t believe me, since you’re Roosevelt lapdog, ask him, or the same illustrious Athie Martin who practically singled-handedly destroyed the UWP!
        Yes boy, I was present at the meeting in Wesley, the Sunday night when Sir. Athie impromptu said he was going to bring all opposition parties together:
        I go come back fu finish dis later!

      • Francisco Etienne-Dobs Telemaque
        April 3, 2024

        So, I come back again! Indeed that night in Wesley, Athie promised he was going to bring all opposition parties in the country together in order to unite against Edison James, which he did and the rest is history!
        What I never understood is why would someone prevent the undertaking of such a project for absolutely no reasonable reason!
        After the meeting was concluded, Athie, came into the house where I was vacationing, Peter Carbon, the former minister of agriculture was there, Athie and Carbon spoke, Carbon left. Athie and I spoke on the subject of ECO (Ecological ) tourism, just before we indulged some Heineken I asked Athie why he and others oppose the international airport?
        Athie told me: “it’s not that we oppose it, but Edison did not discuss it with us.”
        Does that make common sense?
        It was costing less than four hundred million dollars to build then!
        Now, idiot Roosevelt claims it will cost more than a billion!

  5. John Charlton
    March 28, 2024

    It seems that it is a sin to be opposed to this project. Well I’m a sinner then. As someone noted many years ago, we already have an international airport – there are no domestic flights.

  6. March 28, 2024

    The question to be asked is whether this so called international airport is being constructed for the expressed benefit of the “Starboy of Stupidity” and his “mouton batallie supporters and enablers”; his Chinese “puppet masters” or the people of Commonwealth of Dominica; if the latter is the answer then why the hell are we not benefiting from such a project; and why the lack of transparency; our are you setting the stage for another “Tibet” to be strategically positioned in the middle of the Eastern Caribbean.

  7. March 28, 2024

    The goodly Doctor has made some valid points. I see nothing that suggest he is opposed to development. We in the caribbean must do things correctly.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 30 Thumb down 2
  8. Jacob
    March 28, 2024

    Regarding to the high amounts of dust emitting from the trucks that is An easily solved problem. the trucks covered, With a Tarp and wetting the materials inside.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 22 Thumb down 1
  9. Ibo France
    March 28, 2024

    China is one of the world’s leading polluters. At times in many parts of China the smog is so thick that visibility is severely restricted and breathing is problematic. They have evidently brought their poor environmental practices and don’t care attitude to Dominica.

    Imagine, Dominicans living in the proximity of the ghost airport get no respite from the deafening noise by heavy vehicles and equipment. Their lungs must be saturated with particles of dust. Smoke inhalation from the burning of cement bags in open air has to be suffocating. These actions of the Chinese are creating the potential for a nation of infirm people in the immediate and not too distant future.

    When leadership is lacking in government the whole country suffers. Throughout Roosevelt’s tenure as ruler, every aspect of life of the average citizen and resident in Dominica has declined.

    Dominicans wake up!

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 6
  10. Ibo France
    March 28, 2024

    China is one of the world’s leading polluters. At times in many parts of China the smog is so thick that visibility is severely restricted and breathing is problematic. They (the Chinese) have evidently brought their poor environmental practices and don’t care attitude to Dominica.

    Imagine, Dominicans living in the proximity of the ghost airport get no respite from the deafening noise by heavy vehicles and equipment. Their lungs must be saturated with particles of dust. Smoke inhalation from the burning of cement bags in open air has to be suffocating. These actions of the Chinese are creating the potential for a nation of infirm people in the immediate and not too distant future.

    When leadership is lacking in government the whole country suffers. Throughout Roosevelt’s tenure as ruler, every aspect of life of the average citizen and resident in Dominica has declined.

    Dominicans wake up!

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 7
    • March 30, 2024

      My brother you and ALL others are missing out on the key point. Nothing, absolutely NOTHING (eyen) said will be considered by this set of rogues and vagabonds. We have been saying for 2 decades and name 5 things that have been said and considered? In most study institutions after theory, the next step is practical. The people can not continue to rely on talking. It has not worked, and it will not work. I hereby hold to this point.

  11. Tt
    March 28, 2024

    the horns, the noise will be nothing compared to the sound of an aircraft taking off or landing. This you’ll grow accustomed too. I’d personally not want to live near an international Airport.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 3
  12. March 28, 2024

    T.C after much talk, maybe the authorities only hear and understand when maters are brought to a head like Calibishie. Is it time for Wesley folks to stop talking and start acting? How I hear you ask? By blocking roads while we demand a meeting with the powers that be. May be then and only then we can expect our cries and complaints to be taken seriously.

    Surely the activities must take place at the ground level, we complain about the importation of voters, surely you do not expect the diasporians to organise the effort, we can assist but from a distance, the locals must take the lead!! Galvanize the folks on the ground and move forwards, remember that nothing happens until something moves.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 2
  13. Dr.Tu
    March 28, 2024

    Are you serious Dr. Thomas? :(

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 0 Thumb down 21
  14. Alas
    March 27, 2024

    what childish behavior Iis this :-nuh. The project I’d not for a lifetime,sacrifices have to beaded. Chuped tan

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 4 Thumb down 21
  15. Wavet pit latrine
    March 27, 2024

    I am totally in agreement with the construction of an international airport being built , but as you stated,lines must be drawn,I am saddened by the fact that, as you mentioned, Chinese and Indonesians at the helm, what is the headcount on locals working at the sight,are the locals not patronizing the local shops??

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 2
  16. Ibo France
    March 27, 2024

    Living in the proximity of the proposed international airport is a living nightmare for the residents. All these avoidable, man-made problems that the residents have t ensure for years to come, prove for certain that the ghost airport takes priority over the health and lives of the people.

    Who to blame for this untenable situation? The answer is simply this: A nation gets the government they deserve. What do you think when you voted for a unlearned, uncaring, uncouth dunce – UTOPIA?

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 4
      March 28, 2024

      The power is in the hands of the people. For the past elections from 2000 THEY have demonstrated that by electing what they feel best for them and rejected what is not good.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 3 Thumb down 15
        March 30, 2024

        What do you expect with a capital project of this magnitude and NO Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the people to examine carefully or at length before project start date. Such a tool assesses the significant effects of the new Airport project or development proposal on the environment. EIAs make sure that project decision makers think about the likely effects on the environment at the earliest possible time and aim to avoid, reduce or offset those effects.

      • RandyX
        March 31, 2024

        Unfortunately the power is in the hands of people that are dead, Haitians that are smuggled on the voters lists and ‘Dominicans’ that get a free holiday to their home country in exchange for a vote.

  17. Labour power
    March 27, 2024

    You that doctor has always been against the international airport,even before it started.So doe come with your sxxx about majority in favour of airport.Dominicans are not stupid,they know you and a handful of UWP acolytes have had several demonstrations to try to stop construction.Because you cannot stop construction you talking sxxx about authorities and consideration.A Phd does not make you a smart person,it makes you an educated person.The majority of Dominicans are smart you cannot full them with your cxxx.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 20
  18. Bird Parker
    March 27, 2024

    There is no doubt that the concerns of Dr Thomas should be addressed urgently

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 3
  19. Gary
    March 27, 2024

    I would like to ask Dr McDonald Thomas, does he represent the voice of the people of Wesley or is this his personal opinion of concerns. I’m not going to say much, but the motive to write such a comment is questionable for its integrity. There are always two sides to a story. It would be interesting to hear the other side, meaning The project manager responsible for the Construction.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 4 Thumb down 14
  20. John Charlton
    March 27, 2024

    Dr. Thomas lists a number of shortcomings related to this mega-construction project. As a resident of Palmtree, I can attest that all of them have merit. An important issue which he has omitted is the trucking of tarish from Blenheim to Wesley at the average rate of 100 trucks per day – millions of tons in other words. This is a serious engineering planning error. All of this tarish could have been sourced from behind (east) of the airport land without destroying the main road and disturbing hundreds of villagers lives daily. I would add that my discussions with the Chinese CR5 workers here have always been friendly, whereas my interactions with MMCE people have been met with impatience and arrogance. I have the feeling that the CR5 people and certain government officials would agree with this. MMCE pulls the strings.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2
  21. Voice from The South
    March 27, 2024

    You fools really need to stop. UWP supporters are opponents to progress!!
    Saying ‘NO’ to every piece of legislation of projects implemented by the current government is not a strategy for winning the additional seats at the next election. Stop being lazy and get to work.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 8 Thumb down 43

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