After 33 years, Berbice residents get land titles


After some 33 years, residents of Plantation Johns, Region Six (East Berbice- Corentyne) received their land titles from the government following a direct intervention from President Dr. Irfaan Ali.

Housing issues took the forefront of President Ali’s two-day outreach in the region on Thursday and Friday.

On his first day there, he tasked representatives of the Ministry of Housing and Water with processing nearly 200 land titles and transports in the region. Some 25 of those were for the people at Plantation Johns.

And the President said that it was important that this distribution was not delayed any further because some people had been waiting for as long as 33 years.

Rasheed Mohamed, a resident of Plantation Johns, said he was awaiting his land title for about 10 years. He was happy that he finally got the title.

Rasheed Mohamed (seated) gets his land title from President Dr. Irfaan Ali (Photo: Central Housing and Planning Authority/ February 4, 2023)

David Solomon and his wife were also among those who received their titles.

“We are grateful for this after so many years.

“… We were waiting about 13 years now but we were living at the place for about 30 years,” Solomon told the News Room.

Plantation Johns is now entirely regularised.

At a closing press conference on Friday, President Ali acknowledged that the Ministry of Housing and Water has a herculean task- advancing the government’s ambitious housing agenda.

He, however, expressed some disappointment in the lengthy periods taken to process people’s allocations.

“… we had persons waiting for titles and transports that could have been dealt with some time ago.

“What we did in 48 hours we could have done before,” the Head of State said.

And so he acknowledged that more human resources may be necessary to advance the housing agenda.

But staff shortages may not be the only part of the problem.

Dr. Ali also said applicants themselves refuse areas offered to them, sometimes for cultural and historical reasons. And that makes the land allocation process more complicated.

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