14ymedio, Fernando Donante Ochoa, Holguin, 23 March 2105 – the Holguin municipal government decided to hurriedly solve the problem of sewage running down 8th Street between 29th and 35th, in the La Quinta neighborhood, after having received a letter signed by more than 100 people who threatened not to vote in the elections for delegates to the Municipal Assembles of People’s Power on 19 April, if their demand for a solution was not met.
A commission composed of government functionaries went to visit the residents, according to Lino Rubisel Almira García, one of the signatories. “They visited us two days after they received the letter, at the end of last October. The committee wanted to make us desist from the decision, but when they failed to achieve their objective they agreed to approve an investment as soon as possible.
The speed with which the work was begun surprised even those who didn’t trust in the efficacy of a letter with political content adverse to the government to resolve a historic demand, raised since the early eighties in every “Renditions of Accounts Assembly” of the delegates with their constituents.
During all this time, the fetid sewage that ran along the street endangered the health of the inhabitants of more than 60 homes, according to the complaint of Leopoldo Peña Jiménez, another of the signatories, resident of the place since 1979.
The fear of the critical epidemiological situation of the city since 2014 – with the increase in illness like dengue fever, cholera, and hepatitis – resulted in a death that “forced us to use politics when we didn’t get results through established mechanisms,” added Peña.
During the “Process of Renditions of Accounts” of last October, the delegate reported that the work was not in the investment plans and that a long-term solution was projected due to the difficult economic situation threatening the country.
The speed with which the work was begun surprised even those who didn’t trust in the efficacy of a letter with political content adverse to the government
However, Peña remembers that, “When, in the eighties, the government had available resources, the requests to representatives and officials of the People’s Power was characterized, year after year, by false promises that, after they weren’t met, were excused with absurd justifications.”
Given the indolence of the authorities, the residents began to resolve the problem with their own efforts in 2010, placing 8 plastic tubes, each 3 yards long. The solution was insufficient, but the government never provided the necessary resources.
The current work began mid-month last November, and the work, paralyzed as of a month ago, is still incomplete. Those affected point out that there is a section where the putrid waters still flow, and lament that there are still seven open manholes in the sewer, which in addition to blocking free flow, constitute a danger for the risk of falls, especially at night in streets lacking good lighting.
The neighbors continue to wait for the completion of the works, and according to Lino Rubisel, are “willing to write another letter, if necessary.”