500 houses to be constructed through Hinterland Housing Programme
─project to include indigenous villages on the coastland
The Ministry of Housing and Water is currently in discussions to restart the Hinterland Housing Programme in 2021.
Minister within the Ministry of Housing and Water, Hon. Susan Rodrigues made this disclosure during an interview on DPI’s “The Progress Report” on Wednesday.
“In 2021 we’re looking to bring this programme on stream, we are currently in negotiation with an international bank to seek and to secure funding for this programme… It is a very important programme because even though we don’t have land titling for Amerindian communities, we have to encourage them to be able to have their own homes as well, especially in those villages that have overcrowding.”
Indigenous communities are governed by different principles and the lands are not owned by individuals, but by the entire community.
In addition to promoting homeownership in the communities, the project also aims to stimulate the village economy.
Minister Rodrigues said the project will foster job creation in the communities and all materials and labour sourced for the housing programme will come from the respective villages.
In 2021, the target is to build approximately 500 homes in Regions One, Seven, Eight, and Nine, as well as in some coastal areas.
“The exciting thing is that we’re even going to include several other communities that are not considered hinterland communities but Amerindian nonetheless, and therefore they are entitled to any such benefits,” she said.
After a five-month long elections process, the Government programme was not included in the 2020 Emergency Budget in September, which required speedy mechanisms to be put in place to stimulate the economy. As such, the Hinterland Housing Programme, which ended in 2019, was not catered for in the 2020 budgetary allocations.