By Elesha George
A beach on the western end of Mamora Bay is littered with sargassum weed, and a homeowner who has property there is blaming the eyesore on activity undertaken by the management of the St James Club.
Carlton “Og” Spencer told Observer, “This was a beach where people could bathe, I had a bath here this year.
“I want St James to desist from all and any operation on the west side of this beach because it is doing more destruction than good for the past four years,” he said.
A pristine beach managed by the St James Club – a hotel property belonging to Elite Island Resorts sits across the water from private residences. It is majestic in comparison to what now exists on the opposite end of the resort.
Sand and sargassum – which has been increasingly plaguing Caribbean coastlines – have been dumped on the sea side of these private homes.
“Last year was the first time I called the environment (department) and they visited here several times last year, and they said they would write Barrett. They said they wrote him a letter – the owner of St James’ Club – and ask him to desist from doing anything down here,” Spencer explained.
He said activity in the area had stopped until two Tuesdays ago when machines began digging up sand along with the seaweed and dumping it onto the beach.
According to the homeowner, “Last year March, he stopped, and I cleaned back up the whole area, raked it over; I spent like $3,000 between backhoe and manpower and rake back over the whole thing. Make it into a real beach again from wey it deh last year March, and now he come back and do this again.”
The DoE said it has been investigating the issue and is working with all parties affected since receiving compalints about the removal of sargassum and how it is being done.
Senior Environment Officer, Ato Lewis told Observer, “We are aware of the concern that people have with regards to the removal of sargassum at Mamora Bay. We have been in communication with the party that is doing the removal, as well as other stakeholders in the area. We will continue communicating with them to see if we can find an amicable solution to the situation.”
Observer was unable to get a comment from the management at St James’ or Elite Island Resorts before publication.