Apr 29, 2010 News
…some D’Urban Backlands residents contemplate legal action
A roadway that led from Mandela Avenue into a section of D’Urban Backlands, in the vicinity of the National Cultural Centre has been closed, permanently.
However, this action has not gone down well with some of the residents who say that they have been using the roadway since 1972 when the National Cultural Centre opened its doors for Carifesta.
The road ran through a plot of land at the head of the residential community that is home to former officers of the Guyana Defence Force and senior Government officials. The owner of the plot never built anything on it so the road was taken for granted.
However, the landowner, former army officer Dennis Forde sold it to Sarswattie Barnwell who owns the C&S night club on Sheriff and First Street, Campbellville. But before he sold it he had to seek compliance from the Central Housing and Planning Authority and the Housing Ministry because, according to the conditions of sale, these agencies had to be provided with the first option to buy.
The way being cleared for the purchase, Barnwell also never attempted to develop it until two weeks ago when she erected the first fence around the plot. She said that fencing was a stipulation.
However, City Hall swooped down on the property and tore down the fence. Deputy Mayor Robert Williams, explained, yesterday, that the impression was that the fencing was being conducted on a government reserve and that obstructing the roadway was an illegal act.
However, Barnwell proceeded to produce the relevant documents that revealed that the plot of land was indeed transported property, that it was not a part of any Government reserve and that the roadway was a short cut to the housing area from Mandela Avenue.
Yesterday, the Deputy Mayor said that investigations revealed that there has been no breach of the laws. He said that the council is only interested in protecting the housing areas.
There are two entrances to the housing area, he said, both of which can be found on Hadfield Street, Lodge.
However, the residents are contemplating a move to the courts seeking an injunction. They are contending that they have been using the road for 38 years and were therefore entitled to have that road declared a fixture.
Meanwhile, Barnwell has explained that she has sold the land to a church.
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