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The houses at Green Hill as seen on Feb. 18, 2015. (IWN photo)
The houses at Green Hill as seen on Feb. 18, 2015. (IWN photo)
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There has been little visible progress on the houses being constructed at Green Hill under the government’s housing programme, six months after they were to be handed over to hopeful homeowners.

Citizens who have paid the state-owned Housing and Land Development Corporation (HLDC) to build their houses are yet to have them handed over, two months after the deadline by which the HLDC had said it hoped to have them finished (Christmas 2014).

The houses at Green Hill seen in November 2014, top, and February 2015, bottom. (IWN photos)
The houses at Green Hill seen in November 2014, top, and February 2015, bottom. (IWN photos)

Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves told the media last week that he is expecting a report on the development soon from Sir Vincent Beache, newly-appointed chair of the HLDC, a state agency.

“The new chairman, Sir Vincent Beache is providing me with a report either later this week or next week,” Gonsalves said.

Read also: HLDC clients paying mortgage and rent while waiting for houses

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Sir Vincent, who took up the position on Feb. 1, replaced businessman Beresford Phillips, who aspires to be the ruling Unity Labour Party’s candidate for Central Kingstown in the next general elections.

“The outgoing chairman has provided me — almost all the houses were over 70 per cent, some 90 per cent complete. Two or three were 20-25 per cent and then two didn’t start at all. … They had to do with two police officers, … there had to be a transfer of the land so no start could have taken place. And the new chairman has the mandate to deal with this matter at a priority,” Gonsalves said.

Read also: HDLC chair hangs up phone when asked if house will be demolished in Clare Valley

One person who is waiting to have her house handed over, told I-Witness News that she has not heard from HLDC since last November about the status of her house.

In a Nov. 6 meeting, Phillips blamed the state-owned Central Water and Sewerage Authority (CWSA) for the delay.

But the CWSA showed to I-Witness News documents proving that the HLDC did not respond to CWSA communiqué about connecting water to the houses.

Related: Don’t blame CWSA for HLDC’s late delivery of houses — Garth Saunders

In his conversation with the media last week, Gonsalves suggested that Phillips’ removal from HLDC has more to do with policy than his performance as chair of HLDC.

“I just want to say this: Beresford Phillips has been a very energetic chairman, but in this year, where between now and March next year we have to have a general elections, … I don’t allow anybody to be chairman of a state enterprise who is a sitting member of Parliament or somebody who is a candidate or is likely to be candidate, because I don’t want that institution to be in any way sullied by any perception of any political bias, interference or anything of the sort,” Gonsalves said.

Related: Gonsalves hopes to have all election candidates in place by April

2 replies on “Little progress since November on gov’t houses at Green Hill”

  1. There are a number of problems one being they took the house buyers money, the money has run out, they are looking for money to continue.

  2. Sorry for them. All money in SVG now would have to be diverted to the electioneering machinery. If you house is shaking or collapse with you that’s ok at least the money is being spent on making sure the ULP gets back into office.

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