Feb 19, 2021 News
Kaieteur News – The Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) and the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) are moving ahead with plans to implement a new strategy aimed at eliminating slums and other informal types of housing settlements throughout the country.
In a statement disseminated via its social media page, the CH&PA said that it has embarked on its first stakeholder consultation meeting under the Guyana Strategy for Informal Settlements, Upgrading and Prevention (GSISUP) to craft and streamline a sustainable national action plan surrounding informal settlements to inter alia facilitate regularization of squatting settlements, relocation of others from zero-tolerance areas and a reduction of impending informal settlements. The consultations are geared at discussing key challenges surrounding squatting in the hinterland and coastal regions and how those issues can be addressed through a national strategy.
The first session was done virtually on Monday, and featured representatives from Neighbourhood Democratic Councils (NDCs) across several regions.
During the session, Deputy Director of Community Development, Mrs. Donell Bess-Bascom, represented the CH&PA. UN-Habitat Senior Informal Settlements Upgrading Expert, Mr. Michel Frojmovic and Regional Programme Advisor on Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme, Mr. Emrah Engindeniz, were also in attendance.
More consultations are slated to follow. Thereafter, CH&PA and UN-Habitat will be engaging in a Participatory Slum Upgrade Programme, which will further guide the development of GSISUP and the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 11-Target 1: “By 2030, ensure access for all to adequate, safe and affordable housing and basic services and upgrade slums and the concept of ‘Leaving no one behind’.”
The CH&PA successfully launched the Guyana Strategy for Informal Settlements Upgrading and Prevention (GSISUP) – Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme through a virtual presentation held earlier this month. During the launch CEO of CH&PA, Sherwin Greaves, stated that the project is timely as CH&PA continues its mandate to provide affordable and sustainable housing. He also highlighted that engaging with squatters is nothing outlandish to CH&PA staff, who engage with squatters as part of squatter regularization and relocation programmes.
The project is backed by the UN-Habitat, which was represented by Regional Representative for Latin America, Elkin Velásquez; Regional Programme Advisor on Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme, Mr. Emrah Engindeniz; Senior Informal Settlements Upgrading Expert, Mr. Michel Frojmovic and European Union Delegation to Guyana, which was represented by Programme Manager, Ms. Anna Correia de Sá.
Other partners in the project include the European Union (EU) and African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP), local government bodies, civil society organizations and religious institutions.
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