Over 1500 house lots to be allocated in Region 3 over 2-day event
“Dream Realised” initiative
…PM says Govt committed to “affordable” homeownership
The Housing and Water Ministry on Tuesday continued its “Dream Realised” housing drive, this time on the West Coast of Demerara where some 1500 land allocations will be made over a two-day event.
The initiative, which was rolled out through collaboration with the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA), is designed to tackle persons who have been waiting for many years to acquire a house lot. During the two-day event, residents of Region Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara) stand to benefit.
At the Leonora Synthetic Track on Tuesday, Housing and Water Minister, Collin Croal told those gathered that this is setting the stage for a socioeconomic drive that will undoubtedly foster development in other coexisting sectors.
“Over the next two days, over 1500 persons are expected to benefit from allocations. I am pleased to share in this joy of moving a step closer to homeownership…When our Government invest in the housing sector, there is a direct positive effect in job creation. In the construction sector, even increased spending and a great demand for basic goods and services, adds in good things for small and medium scale businesses,” Croal highlighted.
Further, he stated, “We are, therefore, not only contributing directly to the public wellbeing and standard of living but we are also setting the stage of socio-economic drive that will increase wealth amongst our people.”
Meanwhile, Minister within the Ministry of Housing, Susan Rodrigues assured that persons will be allocated lots in communities with full occupancy and proper amenities. Lots were allocated in Cornelia Ida, Stewartville, Anna Catherina and Meten-Meer-Zorg.
“We want to ensure that you are placed in communities that have full occupancy so that you have neighbours, so that there is a playground for your kids, that there is a school, health centre or hospital nearby, that there are supermarkets and shops so that regardless of which region you live, you’ll be able to access all these facilities,” Rodrigues noted.
On the other hand, Prime Minister Mark Phillips, who was present at the event, told the residents that the Government is focused on affordable housing and the provision of utility services in all areas.
Moreover, the PM said these activities are aiding to fulfil the commitments that were made during the campaign trail.
“Our Government will not just provide house lots and neglect you. We will provide infrastructure necessary for you to live comfortably. You will have the basics of running water, roads and electricity so that you and your families can live in dignity. Your Government has been working and will continue to work for you,” the Prime Minister stated.
Meanwhile, Guyana Times caught up with Abdul Azad of Anna Catherina, who received an allocation after waiting for over 20 years. He was overjoyed at the news, noting that his family will start building their house immediately.
“I’m very, very happy to have a lot in my village and I’m thanking the President a million times. I applied since 2000 and I’m very happy today to receive a lot…We will start (building) very soon by the grace of God,” the 45-year-old shared.
Last Friday and Saturday, a similar drive was conducted in Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica) and the target of some 2000 house lot allocations was reached. Most importantly, they were successful in clearing applications from the 1990s.
Rodrigues had told Guyana Times that they were able to assist those applicants who “fell through the cracks” and were waiting for years.
Nevertheless, over $1 billion will be injected into the Region Three housing sector in 2021 through an Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)-funded project. Funds were committed for La Parfaite Harmonie, Onderneeming, West Minister, Recht-Door-Zee, Lust-en-Rust and Schoonord.
The IDB project, which is slated to commence in January 2021, will target infrastructural elevation in existing housing areas to make them more appealing to prospective homeowners and create more sustainable communities.
After entering office, the PPP/C Government removed VAT on construction materials and increased mortgage interest relief up to $30 million in order to enable easier homeownership. (Rupa Seenaraine)