Government’s exercise to secure a plot of land for the establishment of a homestead for immigrants fleeing economic crisis in neighbouring Venezuela has seemingly hit a snag. The land identified in Mabaruma, Region One, is said to be privately owned.
Minister of Citizenship, Mr Winston Felix, today, said that his Ministry in collaboration with the Mayor and Town Council of Mabaruma identified a plot of land in the municipality for the establishment of a homestead settlement area or humanitarian centre for the registered Venezuelans, who are occupying several areas of the Barima/Waini Region.
The Minister made this announcement at the conclusion of the fifth multi-agency coordinating committee meeting held at the Ministry of Citizenship, Shiv Chanderpaul Drive, Georgetown.
Minister Felix said the resettlement area, which will allow the Venezuelans to be self-reliant, is privately owned and that the Government will now have to initiate efforts to determine what arrangements can be put in place to acquire the land for the establishment of the centre.
The Minister also said that while this process is being undertaken, he has tasked the regional administration to set up a Regional Coordinating Sub-committee, which will take charge of the situation on the ground as the agencies on the national committee continue to lend the necessary assistance to those in the region.
Additionally, the Ministry of Public Health has established health posts in the affected areas, including at Mabaruma and Morawhanna and will, by the end of next week, establish one at Imbotero Village from which migrants and residents are being screened and vaccinated, while it is bolstering its presence in Cuyuni-Mazaruni (Region Seven). Refrigerators for the storage of vaccines at the locations have already been procured and will be dispatched and set up by the end of next week.
“[The Department of] Immigration is continuing the registration and support work… The Police [are] also following through with the support work to this committee. So, all agencies, locally, are locked into this committee to provide services and support for the Venezuelans in Guyana. We are also [examining] the situation in Region Seven [in order] to find out where [the Venezuelans] are and what numbers we have to [cater for],” Felix said.