BUDGET 2024: $800M for Amerindian land titling


Many of Guyana’s Indigenous people are expected to get legal recognition for lands they occupy through an $800 million budgetary allocation for the continuation of the Amerindian Land Titling project this year.

Finance Minister Dr. Ashni Singh said a total of $9 billion has been set aside for the development of Guyana’s Indigenous people in the 2024 National Budget.

And according to him, the government is investing that $800 million to advance the land titling project since Indigenous people had been left “languishing without their land-titling programme which had been abandoned” under the APNU+AFC government.

Land titling is the process of offering legal recognition to lands occupied by Guyana’s indigenous people. It has, however, been a longstanding issue that a previous People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) government sought to address. Funds earned through forest protection efforts were used for this venture.

Last year, six land titles were distributed. The six villages that received the titles last year are Four Miles, Region One; Paramakatoi, Region Eight; Copoey Extension, Mashabo Extension, Akawini and Wakapao in Region Two.

Minister of Amerindian Affairs Pauline Sukhai recently said another 25 titles are to be distributed.

Meanwhile, Dr. Singh also announced that the $9 billion allocation includes $100 million for the hosting of the National Toshaos Council (NTC) conference this year. That conference is an annual gathering of Indigenous leaders, called Toshaos.

He also said $3.4 billion in Presidential grants will be distributed to Indigenous communities while $147 million will be for Ameridian Heritage Month celebrations in September.

This year, another $2.7 billion will be directly distributed to Indigenous communities as part of Guyana’s carbon credits venture. Through this venture, 15% of all funds earned from the sale of carbon credits must go to Indigenous communities for projects or ventures they deem necessary for village improvement.

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