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Trinidad : No race, politics in housing plan, said Prime Minister

Port of Spain 22 march 06 [AlterPresse] --- Prime Minister Patrick Manning said yesterday that the Government’s housing policy has nothing to do with race and politics. Instead, he said, it was his objective to develop a comfortable living for citizens.

Stopping short of chastising detractors who have summed up the Government’s housing programme as house padding, Manning said the Ministry of Housing would continue to construct 10,000 homes each year.

He made the comments during a site visit to Wellington Gardens, Debe, yesterday where 488 homes are being constructed on 26 hectares of land.

Manning said: “This is a constituency in which the PNM does not have support, but our housing policy has nothing to do with race or politics.”

He was accompanied by Housing Minister Dr Keith Rowley; CEO of the Housing Development Corporation (HDC) Noel Garcia; and San Fernando mayor Ian Atherly. They toured six housing projects under way in the southland.

During the tour, Manning also viewed several projects in his San Fernando East constituency such as the Pleasantville Technology Centre and the Pleasantville Village Centre.

The community pool being constructed at Cocoyea Village, San Fernando, which is nearing completion, was also viewed by government officials and the media.

Rowley said he had invited the prime minister on the tour to show him the progress of the Government’s plan.

He said: “The housing programme is well on its way and this will bring hope to people who need homes.”

Manning said the activities in South were being replicated throughout T&T, and the homes were being exposed to different systems of construction. He said he was happy trainees and graduates from the Hype and Must programmes were engaged in the building process. [ed gp apr 22/03/2006 10:00]