$3Billion for housing; $2Billion to GWI

CH&PA enforcement arm to address squatting and fair land allocations

– Beneficiaries of pre-2015 housing initiatives to see improvement in services

– GWI to continue pipe replacements in Georgetown

– Water study to be conducted in several hinterland and coastal areas

The Government has set aside over $3Billion in National 2020 Budget to help the ailing housing sector.

Minister of Public Works, Hon. Bishop Juan Edghill

“This allocation will be utilised for various activities including infrastructural development in existing housing schemes, land preparation for new housing schemes and land acquisition. To this end, the capacity for delivery of the aforementioned will be enhanced as well as the CHPA’s enforcement arm, in order to address the issue of squatting, while providing a more robust and fair system of land acquisition,” Minister of Public Works, Hon. Bishop Edghill noted during his presentation of the Budget.

The Public Works Minister said that during the past five years the APNU+AFC Administration served “a disincentive to young professionals, Guyanese families and all seeking home ownership”.

In contrast, the Minister said the new Government has already set a “progressive and expansive” housing agenda that will see the provision of at least 50,000 house lots to Guyanese over the next five years. In addition to this, beneficiaries of housing initiatives pre-2015 will see further improvement in services in varying communities. Moreover, young professionals, individuals with an immediate need and persons with adequate disposable income will be facilitated to commence construction.

The private sector has also been included in the Government’s plan to create a comprehensive housing strategy.

Meanwhile, with regards the provision of safe drinking water, $2.8Billion has been allocated to the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI).

The monies allocated to GWI are also expected to be utilized for “continuing the reduction of the non-revenue water programme and increasing the access to treated water in more areas,” the Public Works Minister said.

Minister Edghill explained that the water Company will continue to conduct pipe replacements in Georgetown to improve pressure in the system, keeping the Vlissingen Road to Cummings Street area as a priority for the rest of the year. To enhance its capacity to drill new wells and maintain existing wells, GWI is also in the process of acquiring two new rigs.

Further, Government is undertaking water supply improvement projects in hinterland areas such as: Mabaruma, Barbina, Wainina, Shulinab, Shea, Cheong Mouth and Bartica.

Additionally, Minister Edghill said that a study for the provision of potable water will be conducted from the Hope Canal, and a design of water treatment systems for Mabaruma, Mahdia, Leguan and Wakenaam in the hinterland regions.

On the coastland, Walton Hall to Charity in Region Two; Bush Lot, Region Five; and Tain to No. 50 Village in Region Six, will benefit from the study.

“This study will be paramount in helping to shape the water sector programme, going forward. We will also work with all stakeholders to ensure proper wastewater management, as well as, to ensure water rates remain affordable.  An integrated water resource and management framework is being developed to ensure the rationalisation of our water resources,” Minister Edghill stated.