Home construction for fifteen (15) informal settlers at Annandale North, East Coast Demerara is expected to begin in the coming weeks.
This announcement was made by Minister of Housing and Water, Collin Croal during a community meeting at the Annandale Primary School on Monday.
Minister of Local Government and Regional Development, Nigel Dharamlall; Commander of Regional Police Division 4 ‘C’, Khali Pareshram; Director of Community Development at the Central Housing & Planning Authority (CH&PA), Gladwin Charles; and several other senior government officials were also present at the meeting, which was a follow-up to a recent visit by President Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali.
The 15 families have been occupying fourteen structures on the sea defense reserve. This poses a threat to both the squatters and their community. The government has since offered low-income homes to each family.
Minister Croal noted that the inventory and house lot registration process commenced on Saturday through CH&PA. He urged the families to be cooperative, as the agency aims to wrap up this process in the next week.
He emphasized that the relocation will ultimately improve the quality of life for the squatters.
“You will be relocated to an environment in which you will be able to benefit from a Title for your land when you’re finished; you will be able to get the water and electricity in a legal manner and you will be able to have an environment that you want your children to be proud to occupy […] and for you to have a safe space for your family,” said the Minister.
Construction of the low-income units is expected to start in October and be completed in approximately three months.
As part of infrastructure development, the Minister Croal stated that all roads in the area will be rehabilitated by the Ministry of Housing & Water – Central Housing and Planning Authority, Ministry of Public Works and the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development.
Moreover, to improve security in the community, installation of street lights at critical points will commence by Wednesday through the CH&PA. Commander Pareshram will also be working closely with residents to find a strategic location for a police outpost.
Through collaboration with the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development and Ministry of Culture Youth and Sport, the community’s playground will also benefit from significant upgrades; and works for the improvement of the drainage and irrigation system are expected to start soon.