The Ministry of Communities, Department of Housing (Central Housing and Planning Authority) wishes to let the public know that the agency had set up systems to deal with an increase in the volume of persons coming to do business at its headquarters, following the very successful Housing Solutions 2017 and Beyond EXPO.
Closure of the office on Tuesday, May 30, 2017
CHPA had informed the public, through a series of announcements, that the office would have been closed on Tuesday, May 30. Notices were also posted at CHPA’s Headquarters.
On Wednesday, May 31, 2017, work commenced promptly at the Authority at 8:00h but there was a build-up of persons from as early as 18:30h, wishing to take advantage of the housing solutions proposed by Government. Out of respect for the comfort of the public, CHPA did not close its gates but allowed people to assemble in the open area, immediately behind the main gate. Due to limited space it required some degree of understanding by the public and for everyone to cooperate with the staff. For the most part, the majority of persons did comply
Given the expectant buildup, systems were put in place to effectively deal with this situation. Desks were set up to facilitate the types of services required by members of the public. It was during the attempts to complete the preparation, that some people became agitated. One of the factors that contributed to the disruption was the refusal of some late-comers to queue up according to the time they came. Some late-comers wanted to be served before others.
During our attempts to maintain order, a member of the public assaulted one of the security guards. The matter was reported to law enforcement but the assailant left the precincts of the Agency before the police arrived
It is unfortunate that this regrettable but isolated incident would be used to paint the Agency as having “failed to be different from the old ways.”
We at CHPA are heartened by the level of enthusiasm shown by the public towards the Authority’s housing solutions and we will not allow this unfortunate but isolated incident to spread a dark cloud over our efforts.
We would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the hard work of the staff who, at times, are required to perform under strenuous and unforgiving circumstances. We would also like to thank those members of the public who refused to be influenced by the distasteful behaviour of a few unruly individuals.
We want the public to know that we continue to register interested persons for the housing solutions. We also wish to assure the nation that CHPA remains committed to the President’s vision of building affordable, cohesive and sustainable communities.