WHILE the authorities are still talking about how best to resolve the problem of polluted waters, holidaymakers and locals alike are reporting that they suffering from the filth in the Limassol sea.
Holidaymaker Craig Taylor this week wrote to the Cyprus Tourism Organisation to “express my absolute disgust at the amount of human excrement floating in the bays and beaches around the St Raphael / Four Seasons beaches in Limassol.”
“With a family of three young children aged 6, 2 and 1, this is not only disgusting but a very real and genuine health risk,” he wrote, adding that this is unacceptable when the family has paid nearly €10,000 for their holiday to Cyprus. The family is not planning to come back.
For this amount of money, Craig continued, the family can go somewhere “where we can swim in fish infested glorious blue seas, not human faeces infested.”
“I got a rash twice this year when I went to the beach,” 26-year-old Limassol resident Marianna Leonidou said on Friday, “this has never happened before. I had to go to the dermatologist who prescribed some cream and told me the rash was from the filth in the sea.” Leonidou got the rashes at two different beaches in Limassol, in Parekklisia and in the popular Akti Olympion area.
Greens MP Charalambous Theopemptou is one of the few who have long called for action. “I was trying a lot to address the subject years ago when I was environment commissioner, but all I came across were walls,” he said.
Theopemptou believes Cyprus needs someone to coordinate the various government departments which are partly responsible for the matter, however, Transport and Works permanent secretary Alecos Michaelides disagrees.
“We don’t need another service,” he had said on Thursday. Instead he suggests to increase the controls, as the relevant laws already exist.
“I am very disappointed,” Theopemptou said in new comments on the subject.
“We have a sewage system in all coastal towns but we don’t have the infrastructure in the ports, marinas and fishing shelters to transfer the sewage directly from the ships to a waste treatment station from where it would go to the sewage system. Who knows what happens with the sewage in reality? We look at fancy solutions when we are at an infantile stage.”