An unresolved issue of land occupation that has been perpetuated for years in Cotton Tree on the West Coast of Berbice is expected to be corrected after a land regularisation exercise gets underway. This exercise is expected to cost some $43M
At the behest of President Donald Ramotar, a process will soon commence for residents to obtain titles to lands they occupy after following through with a land registration process that is enshrined in the country’s laws.
When complete, the exercise will resolve finally the age old issue of many residents in the Region Five community occupying lands with little or no evidence that their occupation is legitimate.
President Ramotar explained that his instruction to rectify the situation stemmed from concerns following the numerous reports he had been receiving about the matter that seemed to have exacerbated.
“Lands were given out to people… some of them sold out but no title was passed to them. Some of them (owners) died without passing any title, some migrated and… over the years that this problem has been here it was festering and beginning to cause some problems in the community itself,” President Ramotar told Cotton Tree residents at a community meeting yesterday, Friday August 23.
The authorities felt that the situation in the community was conflicting with the opportunities afforded by Government for people to gain easy access to land for housing, agriculture and ultimately a better quality of life.
The land regularisation exercise earmarked for Cotton Tree will be completed when a Certificate of Title is awarded to the occupant by a Commissioner of Title who is a Land Court Judge confirming rightful ownership.
Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment, Robert Persaud who was part of the meeting and under whose jurisdiction the issue of surface and sub-surface rights fall, urged residents to cooperate with the surveyors and other officials who will be visiting the community to begin work.