On edge at home
DORAN MORRIS is absolutely terrified of remaining in her Government unit at Block 10E Rosemont, Deacons Road, St Michael.For more than 20 years the house has been cracking, leaking and, according to her, sinking.But on Sunday night she received the biggest scare of her life when, before her very eyes, floor tiles in her living room started flying off the floor.“I heard this thing holler for boom and I shout out what the hell is that, and when I run into the house I see tiles flying up. All I could hear was pax! pax! pax! My daughter’s friend tell me it sound as if somebody lighting dynamite under the house.”With memories of the Arch Cot, Brittons Hill, St Michael collapse still in her mind Morris fled the house.“I know this house gwine fall down. I can’t sleep in there anymore,” she told the DAILY NATION.Morris said a neighbour contacted Minister of Housing Michael Lashley and Member of Parliament for the area, Chris Sinckler, who both arrived around 9 p.m.“I took them through the house showing them all the cracks and where it is leaking, and Mr Lashley tell me that it appears to be a serious matter and that he would send the engineers from NHC (National Housing Corporation) here today,” she said.The engineer arrived yesterday but Morris said he could not provide her with any answers.“All he told me is that they would have to check the foundation. I ask him when he is coming back and he told me when they get the material, but he did not know when that will be,” she added.Morris, who has lived in the house for 26 years, recalled that she kept noticing hairline cracks appearing at different places, and these got bigger over time. There was also water leaking through the roof, and the rafters in the ceiling kept shifting.From a blue book she pointed out the hundreds of times that she telephoned the NHC and the Deacons Road Depot and the numerous officials to whom she complained. However, Morris said nobody ever turned up until two days before the 2008 general election when workmen patched up the holes.After elections she promptly visited Sinckler and pleaded for assistance. Again NHC workers arrived and this time, said Morris, “changed the windows, dig out the cracks and holes and fill them in again and that was it”.But Morris said she knew the problem was not solved.“I would get up in the middle of the night and tell my daughter to listen carefully because I would hear like the house cracking. I would be lying on my couch and I would feel the floor under me sinking”.So frustrated was she with the NHC that at one point in 2005 she refused to pay rent.“I was putting down the money but I refused to give them another cent because nobody was paying me any attention when I complained about the house.”Now, she is hoping that her complaints would finally be taken seriously.“Only me, my daughter and my grandson who is a baby lives here. I do not feel safe in this house. If they are going to work on the house they would have to relocate me and my family because right now I feel this house will collapse any time soon,” she said. Lashley told the DAILY NATION he was awaiting the engineer’s report.