Memorial site for victims of Jamaica’s Cholera epidemic
The government of Jamaica has promised to establish a memorial site for victims of the cholera epidemic of 1860 that led to the deaths of approximately 40,000 persons.
According to Health Minister Dr. Christopher Tufton, the monument would serve as a reminder to Jamaicans.
“I am making a commitment here that we are going to take it up and have discussions, find an appropriate place to memorialise that particular issue in the interest of history and public safety going forward,” he said.
Tufton was speaking at a recent town hall meeting where concerns surrounding the development of the cholera cemetery located in the Corporate Area.
The planned development has already been approved Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation (KSAC) after the Corporation received formal advice from the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) and the Ministry of Health.
Tufton pointed out that the land in question is privately owned and Government’s influence and control over the property is only to ensure that it is not used in a way that may be injurious to the general population.
“That’s what the approval process does. It goes through a process of assessment and analysis, and once all of those things are clear, there is no basis on which to dictate to the private owner what to do with the land that they own,” Tufton noted.
Cholera is an infectious disease that causes severe diarrhea, which can lead to dehydration and even death if untreated. It is caused by eating food or drinking water contaminated with a bacterium called Vibrio cholerae.