‘A spirit that can’t be broken’

DPI, Guyana, Friday, November 8, 2019

Clayton Lambert is a father of two hailing from Berbice, looking to make a living for himself in the Capital City.

With his objective in mind, the Lambert family packed up their belongings and moved to Vryheid’s Lust – a village on the East Coast of Demerara (ECD).

Lambert, his wife and children, settled in a rented an apartment, and without skipping a beat, he went straight to the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) to apply for a house lot.

That was six years ago.

Today, Lambert manages a monthly rent of $50,000, in addition to other living expenses and two children, one of whom is still a baby.

While his current application was filed in 2013, Lambert had initially applied in 2010. When checks were made on the first application, he received startling news. “It’s like I lost three years running behind them [CH&PA] because when I asked, all I was told is that they don’t have any file for me in their records.”

Refusing to lose hope, Lambert kept pressing on with hopes and dreams of owning his home one day.

He told the Department of Public Information (DPI) that moment he heard about the outreaches under the Coalition Government, he felt as though this was the key to all his problems.

“I was there at three the morning. I was the 3rd person; myself and two others spoke directly with the minister at the time,” he recalled of one of the meetings.

While his journey to making his dream a reality continues, Lambert has confidence in the Coalition Government. “I’m just trying to see what can be done… every month it’s fifty thousand in rent, check how much that is a year, and it hurts me to know that money isn’t going to my mortgage.”

Lambert relayed that when he heard about the community meeting on Friday, he travelled to South Ruimveldt in hopes he could meet the minister in attendance.

His story was shared at the meeting where Hon. Annette Ferguson, Minister within the Ministry of Communities, who has responsibility for the housing sector, was present.

It resonated with the large crowd gathered together in the classroom at the South Ruimveldt Secondary.

The Housing Minister gave her assurance that Lambert’s matter will be addressed. She also met with him after the community meeting.

Prior to meeting with Lambert, Minister Ferguson reminded the residents of past outreaches to the area, amongst other things.

I know from the municipality level, Mr. Tudor and his team have been working to address further concerns at the community level… from 2015 to now, we’ve seen an increase in wages and salary, an increase in old-age pension and as we promised, the return of local democracy, local democracy is important to the people. In four years, we have had two local government elections,” she stated, as she urged persons not to lose hope.

Her words were met with cheers, as the crowd, much like Lambert, had not lost confidence in their government.

The community meeting was also attended by the Councillor for the constituency, Denroy Tudor.