As some 628 applications have been received for land at Millie’s Hideout, there continues to be a “mad rush” for land, Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) Regional Executive Officer (REO) Orrin Gordon said.
According to the REO, with the Region Ten administration’s efforts in constructing a road that will lead to the Berbice River, the interest by farmers and others to secure land there continues to be significant.
Millie’s Hideout is the area in Region 10 where Police conduct constant raids as it is a haven for marijuana cultivation. This year alone, Police have unearthed and destroyed thousands of marijuana plants on large acreage in that area.
According to Gordon, Government had given the region $13 million, which was supposed to complete some two miles of road; however, they were able to complete nine miles instead, and is determined that the project which was originally pegged at $300 million can be completed for one-fifth of that amount.
Gordon said that some 628 persons have applied for land at the area, noting that the interest in farming continues to increase, and stressed that the public is becoming aware that agriculture is critically important to Guyana.
He further disclosed that from the 628 applications, the Region has some 21,000 acres of land that will be distributed among the applicants. He added that the region is awaiting the green light from Guyana Lands and Survey Commission before the applications are processed.
The REO stressed that the greatest challenge facing the Region Ten administration in its distribution is that the Lands and Survey Commission is not moving as fast as they expected them to move, noting that it is slowing up the process.
REO Gordon declared that the lands that the Region intends to distribute are for serious farmers, warning that the monitoring and evaluation process would be rigged so as to ensure that those who are genuine about farming can benefit.
In June, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo called on President David Granger to answer for a massive distribution of prime State lands to certain employees of the Ministry of the Presidency, as well as to cronies in the PNC-led A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) fraction of the coalition Government and officials of the States Assets Recovery Agency (SARA), which were supposed to recover State assets.
Meanwhile, the Opposition Leader said its quite worrying since a top-ranking official of Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) also received land. That land is located at Millie’s Hideout in Linden.