Govt aiming to clear infrastructure backlog for new house lots by 2025 – Min Rodrigues

– says 20,800 house lots distributed since 2020; including 5000 on ECD

The People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Government is working to clear the backlog of infrastructural works required in developing communities by 2025 in order that new allottees will be able to take up residency without having to wait for roads and bridges to be built.
Making this revelation was Minister within the Housing and Water Ministry Susan Rodrigues, during a Cabinet outreach to Victoria village on the East Coast of Demerara (ECD) on Saturday.

Minister Rodrigues addressing the gathering

Often, allottees have to wait until necessary infrastructure such as roads and bridges are built so that they can fully take up residency.
The Minister explained, however, that when the PPP/C took office in 2020, there was a backlog of incomplete infrastructure in housing areas. She assured that the Government is working hard to clear this backlog which will allow new allottees to occupy their house lots immediately.
“Now, the work that we have in terms of infrastructure, you know what took place in the 2015 to 2020 period. There was no budget for infrastructure, in any new housing schemes. So now we have to catch up with that. And that’s why we’re a little bit behind,” Minister Rodrigues explained.
“But we want to ensure that by 2025, we have caught up with all the infrastructure programmes and rollouts in all of these communities. So, we can get to a point in the future, a few years from now, where people can receive their allocation and go immediately and start their construction. So, we are working expeditiously to get to that point.”
As it is now, the Minister noted that work is progressing speedily to also clear the backlog of persons waiting on house lots. She noted that they haven’t “come to gaff” but to lay out to the people what their plans are and importantly, follow through on those plans. When it comes to her portfolio, Minister Rodrigues said that a transformation is ongoing.

Minister within the Housing & Water Ministry Susan Rodrigues as she interacted with residents during the outreach in Victoria village

“When we come into communities, you’ve welcomed us and we come to you in all sincerity and we say to you, these are the things we’re going to do and fix and we fix it. And you can go and check it. Only yesterday I was scanning the Facebook posts and let me tell you the transformation I’ve seen. Just from the comments on Facebook on the Ministry of Housing page.”
“You can check, from 2020, 2021 and part of 2022. You’ll see comments like Minister, we’re still waiting on the house lot allocation. You check now, all the posts under the Ministry of Housing for the last six months. You will see a massive change. The change is, Minister we’ve received our house lots and we’re just waiting on the infrastructure,” the Minister added.
Rodrigues further revealed that since their return to the office, a total of 20,800 house lots were distributed including 5000 on the East Coast of Demerara (ECD).
In February of this year, 126 contracts were awarded for infrastructural works under the Housing Ministry as part of its work programme for 2023. Among the communities which will see infrastructural developments are Success, Good Hope, Le Ressouvenir, De Endragt, Great Diamond, Golden Grove, Meten-Meer-Zorg, Stewartville, Leonora, Palmyra and Bartica among others.
However, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA), Sherwyn Greaves stated that works on roads, bridges, culverts, drainage, access roads and other amenities for developing areas will be realised.
A breakdown of the works includes $15.4 billion for Region Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara); $25 billion for Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica); $3.3 billion for Region Five (Mahaica-Berbice); $9.4 billion for Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne); $1 billion for Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) and $2.1 billion for Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice). (G-3)