A logistical delay has prevented the removal of the Mauritanian boat in which 14 bodies were discovered.
So said THA Secretary of Health, Wellness and Social Protection Dr Faith BYisrael, who is also the electoral representative for Belle Garden/ Glamorgan.
In May 2021, fishermen discovered the boat floating off Belle Garden carrying 14 decomposing bodies and other human remains. It has since remained onshore, covered with a yellow tarpaulin, at Clark’s Bay in Belle Garden.
Speaking after a retreat of the executive council on January 8, THA Chief Secretary Farley Augustine announced that the boat will be removed.
“At this point, I am not so concerned about who wants the boat and what regulatory boards want to do with the boat. It has been there far too long collecting water, becoming a cesspool, becoming a place for mosquito larvae.
"The instruction to the secretary with responsibility for Health and who is also the area representative is to find a way to remove the boat from Belle Garden Bay.”
On Tuesday, Newsday saw the boat still at the bay.
When contacted, Dr BYisrael said, “It will be removed shortly. A logistical delay prevented its removal last week. This should be sorted out by the end of this week.”
Asked about plans for the vessel, she said a press release would be sent.
Previously, fishermen and villagers had called for the boat to be removed, saying that they believe it poses a serious health risk to the fishermen and the community.
Newsday tried to call Assistant Commissioner of Police Tobago William Nurse to get an update on the bodies, but calls to his cell phone went unanswered and messages were unread.