…applicants were awaiting house lots since 2010
BRIGHT smiles were once again seen on the faces of many Essequibians as their issues concerning housing were addressed on Wednesday by Housing Minister, Annette Ferguson, during a public consultation held at the Regional State House.
Minister Annette Ferguson, who has responsibilities for the Housing Sector in Guyana, said that she had promised residents of Region Two, during the Government Outreach recently, that she will return to address their concerns. During the public consultations, approximately 33 persons were allocated house lots in the Onderneeming-Sandpit area. These persons had applied for house lots since 2010, 2011 and 2013.
Addressing applicants, the minister said that at the last Government Outreach which was held in May at the Anna Regina Car Park there were a plethora of Housing issues which needed to be addressed. She also told the gathering that at the last outreach approximately 20 persons received house lots on the spot– another promise fulfilled by the government.
“My team and I are here to pick up from the last outreach we had, I had made a commitment to return and, as such, I am here today to address all the issues you have, if I cannot address the same, I have my team with me who will” Minister Ferguson said.
Minister Ferguson said prior to 2015, the Ministry of Housing had in excess of 40,000 applications in the system with 15,000 alone being inactive. Of the 40,000, only 25,000 were active and encouraged persons to keep checking with local offices on the status of their applications once someone applies for a house lot.
Minister Ferguson told the gathering that she visited the Onderneeming Sandpit area Wednesday morning to get a first-hand view on what needs to be done. She mentioned while the Onderneeming area is developing and has available house lots, the Ministry of Communities through the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) is working closely with major stakeholders such as the Lands and Surveys and the Local Neighborhood Democratic Council (NDC) offices to look at other areas where there may be lands available. In the coming month also, she said that an Enforcement team will be in Region Two to do some verification in the Charity area. “My vision for Housing is not just to give people a piece of land with bush, I want to be able to provide a proper land with basic amenities in place such as water, light and accessibility, so that your life can be comfortable– this is what the Government of Guyana is committed to” Minister Ferguson said.
Speaking to the gathering of applicants also was Central Planning and Housing Authority Chief Executive Officer, Lelon Saul. Saul said that it is a mandate of the Government of Guyana to provide housing for the working class people. He, therefore, said that the CP&HA is committed to providing the appropriate housing solution to residents across the country. He also mentioned that the CP&HA will soon be heading to Region 8 to address the housing concerns of residents in that area. “We’re not only providing house lots but we are aiming to build cohesive communities regardless of differences and ethnicity; our vision is to build cohesive, empowered and sustainable communities” Saul said.
Also attending the Public Consultation was CP&HA Director of Operations Denise King, and Region Two Housing Officers, Suean Sewnaryan and Ruben Henry.
Applicants who were presented with titles showered loud praises on the Minister and her team for reaching out to them and addressing their numerous housing complaints.