13 squatting areas formalized in three years – Minister Croal

The government successfully regularized a total of 13 squatting areas between 2020 and 2023 in Regions’ Two, Three, Four and Ten, benefiting 1644 households.

This was according to Minister of Housing and Water, Collin Croal at a recent press briefing. He said part of ongoing efforts, an additional 8 areas are slated for regularisation in 2024.

Minister of Housing and Water, Collin Croal

The areas that underwent regularization included Charity in Region Two, comprising 228 lots.

In Region Three, areas regularised includes Greenwich Park with 44 lots, DeKenderen with 17 lots, Tuschen Railway with 48 lots, Uitvlugt/Stewartville with 82 lots, Vergenogen Railway with 64 lots, Vergenogen South Acme with 86 lots, and Good Hope Railway with 46 lots.

The regularised areas in Region Four encompassed Bachelor’s Adventure [Bare Root] with 321 lots, Block CH Chateau Margot with 44 lots, and Annandale Railway with 76 lots.

Meanwhile, in Region Ten, Block E Christainburg and Wismar [Blueberry Hill] underwent regularisation with 155 lots, and Conception of Fitz Hope-Parcel 3 to 435 Amelia’s Ward Ph 4 saw regularization with 433 lots.

The areas earmarked for regularisation this year, include Philadelphia Railway with 16 lots, Barnwell Railway with 18 lots, DeWillem with 34 lots, and Vergenoegen/Tuschen with 71 lots in Region Three.

In Region Four, DeEndragt Railway with 51 lots, Vigilance/Bladen Hall/Strathspey Railway with 52 lots, Beterverwagting Railway with 15 lots, and Mocha/Arcadia with 222 lots are set to undergo regularisation.

Minister Croal said one of the major focus this year, will be the removal of the entire river Bank between Herstelling to Diamond on the East Bank Demerara.

The ministry has already initiated discussions with individuals regarding their relocation, and many have been assigned house lots. For those interested in the housing programme, some have been directed to the bank.

This was a commitment made by President Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali when he visited the area last year. 

Similarly, to address squatting on the Soesdyke Highway, President Ali announced creating 500 lots for a relocation process.

“When we say regularisation, it means, not necessarily regularising where you at, but it can also mean relocation,” Minister Croal clarified. 

He elaborated on the regularisation process, stating that the ministry conducts an occupation survey, engages with each household, assigns a number to each structure, and follows an allocation system.

Minister Croal emphasised that individuals squatting that was previously allocated a house lot will not be officially recognised.

These initiatives reflect the government’s commitment to improve the living conditions of citizens.