Islamic Development Bank likely to support Gov’t’s Housing program
The Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) will most likely be working with the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CHPA) to develop Guyana’s housing sector.
Officials from the Ministry of Communities recently met with a visiting team from the IsDB at the Department of Housing’s Brickdam office, Georgetown, where a medium-long term housing program was presented and interventions relating to the proposed construction of 10,000 housing units were discussed.
Minister of Communities, Ronald Bulkan who has responsibility for housing disclosed that the initial focus seeks to cater for the construction of 5,000 apartment units as part of medium terms plans to deliver 10,000 units to eligible Guyanese including state employees, low-income earners, and youth.
He pointed out that of the 63, 257 lots allocated in the past 20 years under the previous housing program, 28, 220 are still unoccupied. This, he said, points to the low levels of disposable income, the inability to access mortgages and the inadequate provisions of basic infrastructure in many of the areas.
With 25,000 applications in the system and 17,000 households classified as low income earners, the Ministry of Communities is examining innovative strategies to provide housing solutions to satisfy the great demand, a statement from the Ministry said.
He expressed optimism that components of the housing program will be included in Guyana’s eventual submission to the IsDB.
During his remarks, Chairman of the CHPA Board, Hamilton Green expressed his belief that when citizens are properly housed, it provides for greater access to education, healthcare, social services, job opportunities and other basic provisions.
“We urge you to join us on this major undertaking and partner with us in improving the lives of all Guyanese,” the CHPA Board Chairman said.
Director of Country Programs Department and Special Advisor to the Vice-President, Mohammad Alsaati, in echoing Green’s sentiments, said that persons who have access to adequate shelter can “rule the world”.
He explained that the desire of the Islamic Development Bank is to work with Guyana in pursuit of its medium to long-term strategy that will match available resources with the country’s work program.
The IsDB executive related that the bank is anticipating “fruitful collaboration” and will work with the local stakeholders to develop worthwhile business opportunities.
Proposals from the various government agencies and Ministries are being coordinated by the Ministry of Finance which has responsibility for the presentation of Guyana’s development priorities and projects.
It was recently disclosed that the IsDB will be assisting the Ministry of Public Health with funding of the new National Psychosocial Rehabilitation Complex (NPRC) project which is slated for 2017. This project is expected to cost approximately US Twenty Million Dollars ($20, 000.) The Complexes will be erected in Regions two and six along with an upgrade to the Ministry’s Mental Health Unit to provide emergency clinical services to persons needing diagnoses, care and treatment.