President Ali grants land titles to Leonora Pasture residents, resolving 100-year-old land issue

Residents of Leonora Pasture in Region Three (Essequibo Islands/West Demerara) can finally breathe a sigh of relief as President, Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali has resolved a land issue that has affected them for over 100 years.

During the Office of the President-Direct outreach at the Leonora Track and Field Facility on Friday, President Ali presented the land titles to the residents, granting them legal ownership of their lands.

The resolution was made possible by the concerted efforts of the Guyana Lands and Surveys Commission (GLSC), the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CHPA), and the Land Registrar, that worked diligently to expedite the process. The GLSC had already completed a plan in 1969, which aided in the process, and the remaining work was completed within 24 hours.

Minister of Housing and Water, Collin Croal, clarified that the area, which falls under the purview of the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo), has about 59 occupants. While the first 12 ownership documents were handed over, the remaining titles are still being processed.

These are persons who are cleared and who were available within the last 24 hours. The process will continue. Those persons will have to come in to sign their agreement so that we can be clear that they are the occupants,” he further explained.

The minister said the Housing Ministry will also need to continue its occupation survey in the area to verify that the individuals coming forward are the rightful occupants of the land.

The Department of Public Information (DPI) spoke to some of the residents who expressed their gratitude to President Ali for his swift actions in granting them legal ownership of their lands.

Eighty-one-year-old Shyamsundar Rajkumar said he had been waiting for several decades for this moment and thanked the President and his team for finally resolving the issue.

“This matter has been going on for years…I applied for quite some time now, and after I heard about this event here I came and I’m happy to receive my title,” he said.

Premnaught, a single father of one shared that he has been trying to resolve this matter since 2014, and he is relieved that the opportunity has finally come for them to obtain legal ownership of their land.

He expressed his gratitude to the president for doing a commendable job and ensuring that everything was in order.

“Well, I feel great, very happy because I live here alone and I have one daughter and if anything would have happened to me I don’t know who would have gotten it,” he related.

Housing was one of the main issues addressed during the two-day outreach in Region Three, with the housing ministry engaging approximately 3,000 individuals during the activity.

Alongside those who received title, over 300 people with pending applications in the region were also granted house lots. Additionally, other residents were provided with the chance to apply for house lots, turn-key homes and the steel and cement subsidy.