Some of the squatters who have been displaced as the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) restarts cultivation at lands at Success, East Coast Demerara (ECD) have finally taken up government’s offer of a temporary shelter at the Graham’s Hall Primary School.
Minister of Agriculture Zulfikar Mustapha told this publication that many of the persons who were unlawfully occupying the State lands, who had initially refused to move, are now inquiring about the alternative accommodations put in place by the government.
INews understands that so far, one person has already taken up shelter at the school while others are in the process of moving.
Squatters have been occupying lands in various communities along the East Coast of Demerara including at Vryheid’s Lust, Success, and Chateau Margot.
But GuySuCo had disclosed that some 17,000 varieties of sugarcane, which represented billions of projected revenues, were destroyed by the squatters.
GuySuCo is now embarking on efforts to revitalised the sugar industry by reopening three estates closed by the APNU/AFC regime including the East Demerara Estate (Enmore), which is expect to recommence operations.
As such, attempts have been made to remove the squatters from the lands. They have been given multiple notices to vacate but notwithstanding, many have refused to do so.
On Thursday last, the lands were flooded as GuySuCo began to prepare the lands for cultivation.
Simultaneously, government had began preparing temporary shelters for the squatters but they still refused to move.
Over the weekend, the Civil Defence Commission (CDC) prepared the school by cleaning and sanitising the building, installing adequate washroom facilities and setting up sleeping areas for the squatters to relocate, if or whenever the wish to do so. Overnight packages including hygienic supplies such as toothpaste and toothbrush, as well as blankets and pillows were laid out.
Those affected by the flooding at Success can immediately contact the National Emergency Management System (NEMS) on 226-1114, 623-1700 and 600-7500 and make their way to the Graham’s Hall Primary School, where they will be housed.
Meanwhile, the CH&PA as the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) have visited the area to commence the land application process for unlawful occupants, so that they could be eligible for a house lot.