‘Still too many vacant house lots over the years’ – Minister Bulkan

DPI, Guyana, Thursday, January 4, 2018

Over 4,900 Guyanese were interviewed and have been prequalified for house lots in 2017, while another 1,131 persons were allocated land, however, Minister of Communities Ronald Bulkan said the government is still concerned about the numerous house lots that have remained vacant over the years.

Minister of Communities, Ronald Bulkan.

Statistics reveal that between the years 2000 and 2015, of the approximately 66,000, allocation, 28,000 or 45 percent of lots remain unoccupied. Minister Bulkan said up to the close of the 10th Parliament between 2011 to the mid-2015 period, some 38 schemes were developed across Guyana. Those housing schemes yielded 20,000 house lots, however, only 4,000 of those have seen units being constructed. For the 38 schemes, a total $12.8 billion was pumped into their development.  They now require a further $16 billion to complete infrastructure works.

Speaking at the Ministry of Communities’ year-in-review earlier today, Minister Bulkan said the data informs the program of the authority going forward.

“It makes no sense investing these huge sums of money for a rate of occupancy that is as low as 20 percent,” the Minister said. According to him, it for this reason that the authority has decided to construct units within areas that have complete infrastructure that would allow for immediate occupancy.

Minister Bulkan said too that the information suggests that there might be deeper problems within the sector, among them, the question of disposable income.

Chairman of the Central Housing and Planning Authority, Elsworth Williams.

Meanwhile, regarding the interviews of individuals for house lots over the last year, Region One saw some 52 persons being interviewed along with 140 in Region Two. 598 persons were interviewed in Region Three, while 3,122 have been prequalified in Region Four. Regions Five and Six saw 153 and 328 respectively being prequalified for house lots. Region Seven saw 92 persons being interviewed, while officials in Regions Nine and 10 interviewed 149 and 433 persons respectively.

Chairman of the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) Elsworth Williams told the media today that entity will continue to work towards contributing to progress and development of Guyana and its citizens.

“Also, we are going to continue this year to meet with those persons who have been in the system for all these years and have not been allocated their house lots. We have started last year and we want to continue to meet with those persons.”

CH&PA, he said, will also conclude its negotiations with GUYSUCO on lands that have already been paid for.

Meanwhile, CH&PA Chief Executive Officer Lelon Saul outlined how the 1, 131 lots were allocated in 2017.

“In Region One – 52, Region Two – 28, Region Three – 27, Region Four – 513, Region Five – 20, Region Six – 99, Region Nine – 132 and Region 10 – 201,” Saul reported.

 

By: Alexis Rodney

 

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