Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit has said over EC$60 million in cash from local resources have been approved for housing repairs for citizens following Hurricane Maria which devastated the island last September.
He was speaking on Kairi FM’s Next Level Programme on Tuesday night.
“So far we have approved over EC$60 million in cash to citizens of Dominica…,” he said. “That is just to fix homes and that is outside of the procurement of building materials that we procured in a large quantity and also procuring from local establishments.”
He continued, “We have procured significant sums from local establishments to help with reroofing.”
He stated that the money, “is not World Bank money, it’s not nobody else’s money but our local resources.”
He said his government is committed to providing more, “because it’s not everybody we have touched so far.”
Skerrit stated that a number of homes will be constructed on the east coast.
He said following the passage of Hurricane Maria the government has entered into arrangements with the developers constructing homes in Bellevue Chopin to build apartments in many communities in Dominica.
“We are talking about contracts that have been signed, designs that have been approved and lands that have been already cleared and are in the process of being cleared,” he noted.
Skerrit pointed out that the government has signed contracts or agreements with the developer to build 66 apartment units in Grand Fond, and that would cover Riviere Cyrique and Morne Jaune.
He stated that contracts have been signed for housing in other parts of the east coast.
“In La Plaine 66 apartment units, in Delices 66 apartment units and in Grand Fond we are looking at government lands and we are acquiring another portion of land belonging to Mr. Lockhart and we are finalizing the arrangement with him…,” he explained. “In San Sauveur we are building 66 apartment units there.”
Meantime, Skerrit said his government has contributed financial resources and material resources to all 21 constituencies in Dominica.
“Twenty-one constituencies in Dominica have received financial resources from the government to assist residents with their homes,” he noted. “It’s a huge cost to the government.”
He made it “very clear” that it is not the responsibility of the government to assist citizens
“The government is not obligated to help anyone fix their homes and the record will show after major disasters before this government came to office this wasn’t the case,” Skerrit remarked.