$71B approved to improve access to housing, water

The Committee of Supply approved over $71 billion for the Housing and Water Ministry to execute its mandate of providing housing and water access to citizens this year.

Of the total, $54 billion was approved for the housing sector, with $50 million allocated for infrastructural works including construction of roads, bridges, water distribution systems, electrical networks, and land preparation in new and existing housing schemes.

Housing and Water Minister, Collin Croal along with staff of his ministry during the Consideration of Estimates on Tuesday in the Committee of Supply

Housing and Water Minister, Collin Croal, provided a breakdown of how the funds will be used.

Areas that will benefit from the infrastructure works include Meten-Meer-Zorg, Stewartville, Leonora, Non-Pariel, Hope, Success, Enterprise, Great Diamond, Burma, Shieldstown, Palmyra, Mabaruma, Wales, Lusignan, Good Hope, Bartica Amelia’s Ward, Buxton/St. Joseph, Wakenaam, Charity, Chateau Margot, Sophia, and Number 75 Village.

Minister Croal explained that $1 billion has been allocated for the construction of the first 100 homes in the new Silica City located on the Soesdyke-Linden Highway.

Opposition Member of Parliament Annette Ferguson questioned whether low-income earners will be able to access these homes.

Minister Croal explained that, “The entire Soesdyke highway is being addressed and will be available for all categories of applicants.”

He further stated that infrastructure works will be conducted in Charity, Patentia, Uitvlugt, Tuschen, Soesdyke, Chateau Margot, Sophia, Cummings Lodge, Plantation Belvedere and Amelia’s Ward with the aim of regularising some 1,218 lots.

The sum of $10 million will be invested in each community, with an additional $10 million for utility services.

Minister Croal also informed the committee that $7.3 billion will go towards the continuation of the highways at Eccles to Diamond, as well as an additional $5.4 billion for the Schoonord to Crane road.

A total of $467.5 million was also approved for the construction of a new house office in the vicinity of Houston, Greater Georgetown.

Additionally, under the Adequate Housing and Urban Accessibility Programme $1 billion was set aside for home improvement and construction of core homes, as well as works in existing serviced lots.

Meanwhile, $17.7 billion was approved for the water expansion and management of the sector, with $1.4 billion going towards upgrading and extending water supply systems in hinterland communities across Regions One, Two, Seven, Eight, and Nine.

Upgrades will also be made to water transmission systems in areas such as Pouderoyen, Vergenoegen, La Parfaite Harmonie, Caledonia, and Cummings Lodge to ensure residents have access to a reliable and consistent supply of clean water.