Former housing minister Dr Roodal Moonilal, yesterday, condemned Government’s decision to scrap the “successful and innovative” Land for the Landless programme, which was initiated under the People’s Partnership (PP).
Moonilal, who is Oropouche East MP, claimed, “The callous decision to cancel the land distribution programme compounds the absence of construction of any houses by the Ministry of Housing and the virtual privatisation of this undertaking.”
Moonilal said the programme was carefully designed to promote, “the ethos of land and home ownership and to empower the working masses.”
According to Moonilal, “In six months of the programme, there were more than 60,000 applicants and seven Land Settlement Agency (LSA) sites were fully developed.”
He claimed, by the time the PP demitted office in September 2015, “Some 1,200 lots were ready for distribution.”
Moonilal also said three nationally televised draws were arranged. He said 400 people were set to benefit from the programme and no one knows what would happen to those recipients now that the programme has been scrapped.
He claimed the Housing Ministry could now face legal action from those people selected at random in those draws. Moonilal also condemned the proposed establishment of a ministerial oversight committee to expedite building approvals. He reiterated claims made by Caroni Central MP Dr Bhoe Tewarie that this could be “a recipe for corruption and nepotism.”