Minister of Housing and Water, Collin Croal on Thursday said his Ministry would be starting infrastructural works to the tune of $455.6 million at Experiment, West Coast Berbice, Region Five (Mahaica-Berbice).
Minister Croal was at the time delivering remarks at a community outreach held at the Bath Primary School.
Four contracts for the project were signed on Tuesday. They were among the 199 contracts valued $13.9 billion were signed for infrastructural works in new and existing housing areas, and for the construction of houses. The works also include land clearing, construction of roads and bridges, drainage and access to water and electricity.
The Minister said once the project is completed, over 673 persons who were allocated lands in Experiment under the previous administration, would be able to start building their homes. Experiment has been unoccupied due to the lack of infrastructure.
“By the last quarter of this year, we are expecting that you should be commencing your construction of your own homes,” the Minister said.
Minister Croal said unlike what occurred in the past, the PPP/C Government’s national housing drive would ensure that all necessary infrastructure is in place before land allocation.
“So, what happened is that allocations have been made but the infrastructure works are required to complete that process and that is something we are working on…because the desirable level at which we want to operate is to have the area ready and then do the allocation,” Minister Croal said.
The Minister also spoke of the economic spinoffs from these initiatives, which include the creation of jobs in the Region and opportunities for small business.
He added that the Ministry would return to the Region in early May to host its ‘Dream Realised’ initiative, which would see several people receiving their long-awaited land titles and transport.
The Ministry would also be examining the functions of its regional office to ensure it is effectively conducting its mandate to provide quality services to the people of Region Five.
This year, the housing sector received a total allocation of $8.9 billion. Of this sum, $6 billion will go towards infrastructure and utility works in new and existing areas. This will pave the way for the allocation of over 10,000 house lots and 7,000 land titles to citizens.
Minister Croal was accompanied by technical personnel from the Central Housing and Planning Land Administration, Surveys and Community Development Departments and a team from the Guyana Water Incorporated. Member of Parliament, Hon. Faizal Jaffarally, Region Five Regional Chairman (Ag.) Rion Peters, Regional Executive Officer Ms. Genevieve Blackman also attended the engagement.