The Parliamentary representative for Roseau South, Ambrose George, struggled unsuccessfully to control his emotions at the official handing over ceremony on Friday evening of new houses to six families of Silver Lake.
“I am very emotional about it,” he said through tears.
Friday 19th September 2014, will mark the day when these families began to sleep in comfort and ease, a far cry from the cramped quarters of the long houses that they were forced to make do with following Hurricane David in 1979, when they fled from the city to take refuge a few miles away.
They were given the keys to their new homes which come at no cost to them. They will also be provided with all the amenities including water connections with a three months grace period at no cost.
“We are not going to stop here,” George told the huge crowd gathered at the entrance of the housing complex which is located along the Silver Lake high way. “We are going to continue to improve the housing conditions in Silver Lake.”
Phase two of the Silver Lake Housing Project is expected to begin soon with funding provided by government under phase two of the Silver Lake Re-development Project. The process is currently at the tendering stage with the deadline set for next Wednesday (24th September 2014).
In that phase, long house number one will be demolished and another apartment building will be constructed in the same location. It is anticipated that within one year the community will have a new face lift.
“So that within the next few years and in quick time, we expect to see a total transformation of housing in the Silver Lake area. And you can look forward to that and this government when it makes a promise, it keeps that promise,” George stated.
He told the Silver Lake residents that their improved living conditions are also expected to be accompanied by an elevated sense of pride as Dominicans.
“This is what I envisage for the people of Silver Lake,” he pointed out, “a proud people with a will to help themselves, to avail themselves to every opportunity that comes to their doorsteps.”
The six families were encouraged to keep their surroundings clean and treat the houses as if they were built by their own sweat and blood.
The four, two bedroom, and two, one bedroom apartments cost about EC$ 1 Million.
The project began in October 2013 and ended in July 2014.