Remapping project to address hinterland land issues – State Minister
DPI, Guyana, Friday, October 11, 2019
The remapping of Guyana, a project being executed by the Guyana Lands and Surveys Commission (GLSC), will address the many land issues across the country, especially the hinterland. This was explained recently by the Minister of State, Hon. Dawn Hastings-Williams who noted that the exercise had not been done for some 50 years.
The minister was at the time speaking at the 13th conference of the National Toshaos’ Council (NTC) at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre (ACCC).
The gathering was informed that the remapping project is currently ongoing in the Barima-Waini, Region 1. Through the exercise, GLSC will be better able to determine and advise at any time, where lands are available, whether it is suitable for housing, agricultural or whatever purposes might be required.
“We have found out that some boundaries extend to other communities, and we find that in all the different regions… For example, in Rockstone [Region 10] people are claiming they have leases falling within that boundary. We have found out that in some communities persons were granted mining concessions within those boundaries.”
According to the State Minister, while this was a situation the administration met upon entering office, a solution had to be found. Therefore, the GLSC has been tasked with crafting a National Land Policy for Guyana, a project that is being funded by the Guyana REDD+ Investment Fund, (GRIF).
“Thus far, we have no plan that can identify where public and other buildings are, where mining concessions are and where roads are. That is why the Lands commission is working on remapping on our lands so that you can just go on google and identify where a specific area or building is, a specific restaurant, where to turn, where to find a heritage,” Minister Hastings-Williams explained.
Regarding the Amerindian land Titling (ALT) project, she made it clear that the GLSC continues to collaborate with the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs to title, demarcate and address the many issues of land in Indigenous villages.
Minister Hastings-Williams reminded that the GLSC is the main authority body that is responsible for all state lands in Guyana.